Here is a short interview with Dr. Richard Day. Dr. Day is a Professor at the University of Hawaii in the Department of Second Language Studies. He is a well-known and highly regarded linguist. In this interview on ReadOasis TV, Professor Day answers this question. Is extensive reading good for students of English?
Interview Question: What would you say to the teacher who is skeptical about doing extensive reading, you know, I’m not sure if it’s for me, I’m not sure if it’s for my students. Why should I consider that? Caption: What would you say to the teacher (or student!) skeptical about extensive reading?
Dr. Day: Right. One of the problems I know when I’m talking to teachers who’ve heard about extensive reading is they wonder, “Am I teaching anything?” They’re very concerned that if students read “are they actually teaching.” And I tell them that they’ve got to do a lot of work beforehand to get the right books and all that. And when they get the program going, what I have found, and what teachers have told me over and over again, is the students get motivated and get excited. And then what happens is, teachers have a hard time getting the students stop reading.
Yeah. Usually we have a hard time getting students to read, and when students are engaged in extensive reading, they enjoy it so much that they wanna keep reading. So, I know that some teachers think, well “Gee, just students just reading, what’s gonna happen?” Well, their reading ability’s gonna improve, their motivation and their attitude towards learning the foreign language, usually English, improves. And one of the things that we know is that it’s this improvement in the affective side of language learning of extensive reading extends to the entire scope of learning the language. So they’re excited about just learning the language not just reading.