From baby’s parents and family members buy books as gifts in the hope that they’ll love to read, yet by middle school, most kids stop reading that aren’t aligned with school. In the USA, an alarming 66 percent of fourth graders in public school were reading below the proficiency level. *study by Annie E. Casey Foundation – 2013. What has happened? The habit of reading has been overtaken by the need for technology with increasing screen time. With today’s social media we are all use to scrolling through Facebook or Twitter the way children love leafing through books as toddlers looking at the pictures. While technology is slowly taking over we mustn’t forge the value of books in our childhood. Reading is hard work, and life offers so many other ways to entertain children meaning reading can often seem more like work than play. Denying children the skill of reading means that hey never get to that wonderful place where reading a book is more fun than almost anything.
While reading is a past time that is assigned with early childhood it also gives us skills to take through life. Children who read are armed with the vocabulary necessary to communicate to their peers, teachers and parents. Education provider Gemm Learning say Children who have the ability to find the words they want to use are more likely to have a strong self-image and sense of confidence. “With more knowledge comes more confidence. More confidence builds self-esteem. Since you are well-read, people look to you for answers. Your feelings about yourself can only get better” Gemm Learning Says. Along with the art of communication reading also helps to improve attentions spans and better concentration.
A child who learns to enjoy reading grows in self-confidence and independence. It also sparks curiosity about people, places and things and also satisfies a child curiosity by providing explanations of how things work. I can expose a child to a range of problem-solving techniques. In addition, childhood reading ignites the child’s creativity and imagination. While many people assume that creativity is an in born talent that their children either do or do not that, it is more a skill that can be learnt than inborn talent. While creativity is not limited to artistic ad musical expression - it is also essential for science, math and even social and emotional intelligence. It is through reading that a person is going to be able to discover new ideas, concepts, places, and people. Some people even describe reading as a journey that starts as the opening of a page, and finishes as the last page is turned. Reading is important as it relaxes our mind and soul; it is a way for children to reach out to the world, and it improves our thinking process.
At YMCA outside School Hours Care we see the importance of this down time and most of our services have a designated reading area. This area is a time for quiet, is great for those who maybe a little more sensitive to noise and for giving children the chance to stop and read. We encourage children to read of pleasure and as a social activity with their peers. As we are always looking to expand our reading area’s next time you have a tidy up and sort out, please don’t hesitate to donate any books to be able to nurture the reader and future thinkers.