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"The Teacher Who Couldnít Read" by John Corcoran;
Focus on the Family Publishing, 1994.

The book chronicles how every level of grade school might have been the time or place where John could have learned to read, but something happened in every grade that allowed him to slip through without learning to decode the sounds of words.

"It didnít occur to me in the second grade, or in the third, that my seat at the back of the room, the demerits and punishment, all were related to my inability to read. I was like an American tourist trying to decipher the street signs or read a newspaper in Tokyo. Nothing made sense, and the swats didnít hurt nearly as much as the humiliation."

Before he learned to read at age 56, he had been in and out of 17 schools, both private and public. John was led to believe that it was his fault that he couldnít read. He therefore befriended smart kids in school to help him with his work, and he became a star athlete. His social skills were highly developed which compensated for the inability to read and write.

John Corcoran went through Texas Western College in El Paso on a basketball scholarship. Eventually he became a sociology teacher and managed to hide his literacy problem. Later he ran a successful business, but required other people to handle all the paper work.

This book is excellent because it demonstrates that all of us learned to read because another person guided us into it. No one learns to read without the help of another person. Recommended reading.


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