By: Mihle Mboyise
Interview with Mrs Mitchell, Fish Hoek High School’s library director and English teacher. She annually host and organises the school’s Readathon.
What is the Readathon?
The Readathon is a 24 hour reading marathon in which the pupils have to read for an hour, take a ten minute break, read for another hour and take a ten minute break; then have a twenty minute break for a meal. The aim is to stay wake for as long as you can.
What kind of people would be interested in doing the Readathon?
Book Addicts. The people who read under the desk in class, people who read with their cell phone light on when their parents have told them to go to bed. People who just love books.
How long have you been doing the Readathon for?
It’s the third year I’ve done the Readathon.
When you did the first Readathon did you personally underestimate the amount of effort it took to stay up for 24 hours and just read?
I underestimated the effect it would have on me and I underestimated the ability of some children to just read, read and read!
What does it take in your opinion to stay up for 24 hours?
A really good book. I’m the kind of person who will read until there are tears in my eyes, I don’t fall asleep if it’s really good.
Do you think staying up long depends on the book’s interest or the person?
It depends on both, because some people read to relax and go to sleep, as they have done something enjoyable and some stay up in anticipation for what’s going to happen next and read until they are exhausted.
What’s the most amount of books a person has ever read in the Readathon?
Thirteen books is the most anybody has ever read in the Readathon.
What do the winners receive?
The winners receive book vouchers from Readers’ Warehouse.
What’s your personal best?
My personal best is the joy of seeing people read and really enjoy reading. That thrill of them being able to do what they really love without any interference, is tops!