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Literacy is one of the most basic building blocks of life. This may not be the most important when it comes to sustaining life, but it is the most important for personal growth. Knowing how to read is essential to personal and intellectual growth. This world revolves around communication. The most common form of interaction between a person and the outside world are words and symbols. Being illiterate can turn simple ordinary task into a daily struggle and this can lead to a depletion of personal growth. Maslow states there are five basic needs for human growth. He also state that one has to fulfill each level and move on to the next to achieve a sense of fulfillment and growth as an individual person.
I came straight out and asked the last guy that was trying to woe me, if he knew how to read. You would be surprised at who it is that don’t know how to read and that’s what I told him when he looked at me funny. The illiteracy rate is a shocking number here within the United States. These are some statistics about the American literacy rate:
Illiteracy has become such a serious problem in our country that 44 million adults are now unable to read a simple story to their children
50% of adults cannot read a book written at an eighth grade level
45 million are functionally illiterate and read below a 5th grade level
(Literacy Project Foundation - Statistics2008).
These needs are:
Self-actualization, is realizing your own personal potential. It is important for a person to be able to read, because people can tell you anything. Your personal growth is most elevated when you can do the research and read the manuscript for yourself, and then formulate your own opinion in agreeance or in refute of the given. Being able to read is a key component in developing personal growth that gives a sense of self-actualization, and defining who you are as a person.
Esteem, is how a person feels about themselves. Esteem builds confidence in one’s self and respect for others. Knowing how to read is essential in building a healthy self-esteem. The ability to read makes a person feel like they are able to keep up with changes. The inability to read can lower esteem because people feel like they cannot keep up and lag behind when introduced to new things.
Social is interaction with family, friends, and intimate partners. This is also referred to as love and belonging. This also come with the functions of being literate. In some cases within a social setting it is important to know how to read words as well as people. Understanding written, verbal and none verbal behavior is very important in defining character. This to come with knowing how to read people and knowing places.
Safety, The most important is being literate to ensure safety. Everything that is sold and having some type of danger comes with a warning label and directions for proper use. Knowing how to read will cut down on accidents if the warning labels and signs are clearly displayed.
Physiological needs is being in agreeance with your surroundings. This includes shelter, food, water and warmth. This also includes the biological factors of breathing, air, sleep, sex, and excretion. Most of the knowing of biological factors are natural but if there are products in use that assist these biological functions the ability to read and follow directions are essential factors. Physiological needs also come with knowing how to read. To obtain and sustain an independent lifestyle, it is most imperative to know how to read. If not you are going to have to spend a lot of money to pay somebody else to do repairs maintenance and shopping that a person that knows how to read would normally do for themselves.
McLeod, S. A. (2014). Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs. Retrieved from www.simplypsychology.org/maslow.html
Literacy Project Foundation - Statistics. (2008). Retrieved May 25, 2016, from http://literacyprojectfoundation.org/community/statistics/