I absolutely cannot think of a better inspiration for getting schoolchildren to read than by choosing a man who got very rich without ever having read a book in his life.
A primary school in Scotland, has a "reading champions" series that's most teachers talking about their favorite books. But they managed to land one local celebrity for a brief Q&A: Aberdeen striker Darren Mackie, who's made lots of money and set lots of team records mostly by never leaving. He is, it turns out, not the most avid reader.
Go over to the Meldrum School's Tripod-looking site now. Darren is brutally honest. He doesn't read books. He reads men's magazines. He actually starts one answer with "If I did read books." He is aware that "you learn things from reading." He still does not read books.
My favourite book is Lord of the Rings although I haven't read the book I have watched the films.The book must be good because the films are so good.
My favourite author is J.R.R. Tolkien because he wrote the best story ever told, Lord of the Rings.
Darren has a vague recollection of once having been read to as a child, so he is able to answer one of the questions in a way that won't squash a child's joy for learning. Still, there is a valuable lesson here for the kids of Meldrum, a lesson we all have to learn sooner or later: the people you look up to are often dumb as shit.
Reading Champions: Darren Mackie [Aberdeenshire Council]