A Scholastic report recently found that among children between the ages of 6-17, reading for fun has dropped significantly over the last few years with only 31% of kids stating they read a book for fun almost daily. In the age of smartphones, IPads and TVs, a clear incentive to pick up a book for one’s own reading pleasure can be hard to come by.
The importance of reading in childhood is often considered to be linked to a strong vocabulary, as well as creativity and curiosity. “Some literacy experts said that when parents or teachers read aloud to children even after they can read themselves, the children can hear more complex words or stories than they might tackle themselves.” So what can be done to re-introduce children to a love of reading?
For parents who have the time and resources to do so, reading to one’s children from birth and well beyond toddler-hood can help. Beyond reading to a child though, even “a two-minute conversation about something on television or something in a magazine or something that you’re reading yourself can also have some of the same positive effects as reading aloud.” Teachers can also encourage more independent reading time during the school day, as even children who “devour” books can see decreased reading habits when not given the opportunity in school.