For those who have the desire and will to cultivate professional interests even more.
Not even the scratching of pens or the sound fingers on the lap top keyboards are heard during a Bring-Your-Own-Book module. Everybody, including the teacher, is reading a book of their own choice. Most bring one of their own and if they don’t, they get to choose one from the school library. It cannot be graphic novels, it cannot be e-books and fiction is the preferable choice. Ear phones are not allowed (unless dispensation granted) and neither is doing one’s homework.
What is described above are the rules for Grenaa Gymnasium’s newest initiative, Bring-your-own Book, which is inspired from a similar project at Rosborg Gymnasium in Vejle. The students have received it well. “To me this is an oasis in my busy every day life,” says Victoria Nielsen from 1.abk. “And the fact that we get to choose ourselves what we want to read only makes it better.” Her classmate Anna Brahe agrees and to her it has been eye-opening.”It has been really nice to discover that I enjoy reading,” she says with a big smile.
Being quiet and concentrated are two sides of the same coin and a spinoff that both teachers and students appreaciate. “They become all concentrated and quiet at the same time,” physics teacher Jakob Schouborg says after af BYO Book session in a physics module with 1.abk. “It makes the rest of the day better,” student Joachim Sørensen says.
Study counsellor and Danish teacher Søren William Johannesen explains: “BYO Book is time and space for a focus and concentration that contrast the hectic and flickering everyday life experience that most young people have today,” Søren William Johannesen explains. He is study councellor and Danish teacher and the driving force behind the initiative at Grenaa Gymnasium.
”Many of our students are not used to reading longer texts. They read mainy headlines and brief posts on social media.”
“BYO Book is about sustained focus on a longer text and this will improve one’s ability to concentrate, one’s reading skills and one’s writing skills. These are skills that students need to complete their upper-secondary and further education,” Søren William explains.
He continues: “However, BYO Reading is also about understanding one self and other people better. “Reading a novel you gain access to thoughts and feelings of other people. Literary fiction is communication of life experiences and experiences gained through reading are not of lesser value than experiences gained through one’s personal life. This is why reading fiction can strengthen not only our students capability to cope with dissapointments and setbacks, but also their empathy with other people, whether they resemble themselves or not.