In ‘reading habit’, we get two words ‘reading’ and ‘habit’. Reading is an action of a person who reads and habit is a product of this action or learning. Like all other habits, the habit or reading in an individual develops during the course of time. Smith and reading is an active attempt on the part of reader to understand a writer’s message. Reading can be seen as an art of interpreting printed and written words. Nowadays, a common allegation is raised that the reading habit is decreasing. It is true that if we go to the reading room of a library, we find most of the seats are dusty. It is really a matter of concern.
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Reading is a precise process. It involves exact, detailed, sequential perception and identification of letters, words, spelling patterns and large language units. More simply stated, reading is a psycholinguistic guessing game. It involves an interaction between thoughts and language. Efficient reading does not result from precise perception and identification of all elements, but from skill in selecting the fewest, most productive cues necessary to produce guesses which are right the first time. The ability to anticipate that which has not been seen, of course, is vital in reading, just as the ability to anticipate. What has not yet been heard is vital in listening. Today, the reading has social, academic, economical and survival significance, because democracy of a country can survive when people at large have reading competence. Reading is always a means to an end and not an end in itself. Further, reading is the process of using over ‘eyes’, our ‘mind’, to understand the literal as well as the hidden meaning of what the writer was attempting to convey. Therefore, reading gives both power, and pleasure with understanding, by reading the material as a unified whole, by which one can expand the frontiers of knowledge and scholarship.
BENEFIT OF READING HABIT
The impact of reading in people’s lives is extraordinarily widespread. A reader can learn new skills, can be introduced to new facts, he can become more knowledgeable about the whole world and he can be stimulated to both thought and emotion. Reading has the unique power of transforming readers.
Reading is the art of interpreting printed and written words. It is a basic tool of education. The reading habit is one of the powerful and lasting influences in the promotion of one’s personal development in particular and social progress in general. Regular and systematic reading sharpens the intellect, refines the emotions, elevates tastes and provides perspectives for one’s living; and thereby prepares him for an effective civilizing force tending to unite social groups through the dissemination of common experiences. Considering the social, cultural and educational goals of reading, it is felt that it is worthwhile to know the reading habits of students’ community. There are only a few numbers of attempts in the field of reading interest of college students.
Comprehension is defined as the construction of meaning of a written or spoken communication through a reciprocal, holistic interchange of ideas between the interpreter and the message in a particular communicative context. comprehension is the process of simultaneously extracting and constructing meaning through interaction and involvement with written language. Comprehension can be seen as the construction of meaning; although there are many different definitions of comprehension, there seems to be a common theme in each - comprehension consists of students being active readers, processing what they read, forming a mental image, summarizing, and drawing conclusions. These actions guide the reader to understanding and connecting with the text while assisting the reader in gathering details and making meaning of the text. Through this process, readers use critical thinking to find a balance between the writers’s meaning and his or her own interpretation of the text. Reading comprehension is as critical for beginning readers as it is for proficient, skilled readers; therefore, reading comprehension skills need to be taught and reinforced in all stages of literacy development. Typically, comprehension problems surface when students have not developed or learned the necessary skills and strategies to help them make sense of what they are reading. Teachers should provide a large block of time for actual text reading. Students are more apt to build fluency when spending time immersed in the text. Making this time for the students to focus on active reading skills can help establish a better understanding of and confidence in reading comprehension. When teaching reading comprehension strategies and techniques, teachers can model effective strategies by thinking aloud and by illustrating techniques such as restating the text in your own words, looking back in the text, or looking forward in the text. Allowing student’s time to read in small groups or with a partner gives them the opportunity to read the lines, hear the lines, and discuss the story. These learning situations provide students the opportunity to connect personally with the text and share their ideas and understandings with classmates. Learning to participate in these processes effectively requires direct instruction and modeling from the teacher as well as time for students to practice the strategies
READING HABIT AND READING COMPREHENSION NEXUS
Reading habits are well-planned and deliberate pattern of study which has attained a form of consistency on the part of students toward understanding academic subjects and passing at examinations. Reading habits determine the academic achievements of students to a great extent. Both reading and academic achievements are interrelated and dependent on each other. Students often come from different environments and localities with different levels of academic achievement. Therefore, they differ in the pattern of reading habits. While some students have good reading habits, others tend to exhibit poor reading habits. Academic achievement means how much knowledge the individual has acquired from the school. Effective reading is important avenue of effective learning and reading is interrelated with the total educational process and hence, educational success requires successful reading habit. He believes reading is the identification of the symbols and the association of appropriate meaning with them. It requires identification and comprehension. Comprehension skills help the learner to understand the meaning of words in isolation and in context. Before the advent of the television, both the young and the old found enough time to read. Apart from teachers, other professionals used to spend their leisure time in reading both English and vernacular literature. English medium schools almost always demanded extra reading from their students. But all these have become a thing of the past
In conclusion, comprehension is a necessity that every student and person needs; it is important for teachers to provide as much reading time in the classroom as to improve reading habit. Keeping students engaged and interested in the text and allowing them to visualize and connect with the reading is essential to increase reading comprehension. Teachers must keep an open mind and incorporate a variety of comprehension strategies to meet the learning needs of all students. They are responsible for creating an environment that fosters an appreciation for reading, success in reading comprehension, and ultimately, an opportunity for students to grow to become mature and effective readers.