Appreciate the written word and its impact on your life

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Appreciate the written word and its impact on your life

Ava Charnley, staff writer

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For well over a decade now, humans have come to rely on cell phones. With that reliance came excessive use of emojis, texting slang, and voice to text. While it is hard to imagine life without these luxuries, one has to wonder about the negative consequences of it all, especially for our generation. What will the impact be? Will we have the same “connection” to the written word as the generations before us?

 

As young kids we were so excited to learn to read. We read picture books, we read the signs along the roads, we read every printed t-shirt, and we tried to understand what it all meant. This became a new way for us as children to understand the world around us. However, after a while we stopped noticing that we were even reading those signs and t-shirts. We stopped paying attention to the words around us.

 

Now imagine living in the same world just with no written language. No signs with letters, no books, no code for video games, and so on—if it has letters, imagine they aren’t there. If you think of it from that perspective, a lot of things change. The world may even become dull. We wouldn’t have many of the technologies we have today. We wouldn’t have books and newspapers and blogs to read for entertainment and information. 

 

We take the written word for granted on a daily basis. We ignore it because we are too busy watching a video or we skim through class reading materials so we can get back on Snapchat. We are all guilty of not giving the written word her respect or even seeing her. We pass her by and never realize what the world would be without her. This is one thing kids have that we don’t, the ability to see and pay attention to the words around them. 

 

The written word is seen around the world in many ways and forms. I challenge you to stop taking it for granted and start noticing again. Pay attention to how often you read each day and how much information you acquire from doing so. Notice the signs in the hallway, the billboards along the highway, the signs outside of restaurants, the materials you read in school, and yes, even the words you read on your phone. Contemplate where we would be without the written word.  

 

As author Gary Halbert said, “The written word is the strongest source of power in the entire universe.” Find a way to notice, appreciate, and harness this great power.