- It's boring.
- It takes a long time.
- It makes them fall asleep.
- It's hard.
Remember: they were assigned the first four chapters of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, a children's book, which is actually pretty engaging, if I do say so myself.
I then took a few minutes to talk about why reading is essential to becoming a good writer, to explain that I am not stupid enough to think that I can make them love reading to the extent that they stay awake reading War and Peace into the wee hours but that I do hope that they will approach reading with an open mind, and I then suggested that every time they think of the word "read," which they view as meaning the passive consumption of a boring text, that they supplant it with either "interpret" or "investigate."
So yes. This is today's view from the trenches. I'm certainly hoping that things improve.