The Importance of Reading for Children
“There are many little ways to enlarge your world. Love of books is the best of all.” This quote by Jacqueline Kennedy sums up the major role books play in shaping people’s lives and minds. In this fast-paced world overrun with social media and television, there is nothing as soothing as sitting down with a good book in hand. The quote is right in saying that the love of reading opens up a whole new world of knowledge and joy for people. However to enjoy the true benefits it is necessary that the habit of reading is inculcated as early on in life as possible. Therefore the sooner in life children are encouraged to start reading, the more beneficial it is for them. Let us take a look at a few of the benefits of reading.
Benefits of Reading
Opens up Their World – Through stories children get to know about people of different countries; their lifestyles, their culture, the clothes they wear, the food they eat, their beliefs etc. This opens up children’s minds to the whole world and they learn to appreciate people who are different from them. As a means of inculcating a sense of openness, empathy and friendliness towards other people reading cannot be replaced.
Improves Vocabulary – Children should be encouraged to look up new words they encounter when reading books, this helps them improve their vocabulary. We’re living in a world of short attention spans;
reading improves concentration and is one of the best ways to train the mind to stay focused. Reading also makes them very fluent in the language thereby improving their communication skills.
Develops Their Creativity and Imagination – While reading books, children become a part of the world of make believe. They live the magic, solve the mysteries and relish the adventures they read about in books. This helps children develop their own sense of creativity and sparks their imagination. Some books, like biographies, not only are sources of inspiration, but offer valuable knowledge by shedding light on the life experiences of influential personalities.
Source of Entertainment – Reading as a source of entertainment definitely beats social media and television. While reading a book, children forget all their fears and anxieties and truly relax. Unlike social media where children become moody after spending a few hours on the phone, reading a book (for the same amount of time) makes them happy and relaxed. Reading truly provides children the same entertainment benefits as social media with none of the ill-effects.
Analytical Skills – Keeping track of the storyline and characters exercises children’s minds. Adventure stories with their mystery, clues and excitement encourage children to analyse the clues and solve the mystery. Therefore while imparting hours of happiness books also help in the development of children’s analytical skills.
As mentioned above, reading as a pastime is a source of happiness for children along with being extremely beneficial for their cognitive development. Therefore the sooner children are started on this wonderful habit, the happier and more well-rounded they grow up to be.