Wednesday, February 24, 2010
"Spend at least ten wildly happy minutes every single day reading aloud." Mem Fox
March 3, 2010 has been established as LitWorld's (click to go to website) first World Read Aloud Day to celebrate and encourage the invaluable practice of reading aloud and to bring attention to the importance of literacy across all countries and for all of humanity.
So whatever you are doing this week, take a little time to read aloud to someone.
According to Mem Fox, author of Reading Magic, "If everyone understood the huge educational benefit and intense happiness brought about by reading aloud to their children, and if every adult caring for a child, read aloud a minimum of three stories a day to the children in their lives, we could probably wipe out illiteracy within one generation."
This is a pretty bold statement and of course does not turn things around completely if a child struggles with reading because of a learning difference, but one that many Early Childhood professionals firmly believe in and one which speaks a great deal of truth.
So what kind of difference can reading aloud to a child for between 10 and 30 minutes per day make? The statistics speak for themselves...
If daily reading begins in infancy, by the time the child is 5 years old, he or she has been fed roughly 900 hours of brain food!
Reduce that experience to just 30 minutes a week and the child's hungry mind loses 770 hours of nursery rhymes, fairy tales, and stories.
A pre-school child who has not been read to could enter school with less than 60 hours of literacy nutrition. No teacher, no matter how talented, can make up for those lost hours of mental nourishment. So "feeding a book" to our kids, no matter what age they are or what reading material we choose, is, and will always be, one of the most beneficial ways to develop learning both at home and at school.
As a lover of reading and books who is nearing the end of her fourth decade, I can honestly say that I will never get tired of being read to and continuing to learn from the experience....
Posted by Mrs R at 11:13 PM