Educators across the world can all agree on one thing, and that is the importance of reading and its remarkable powers in learning and development.
This year, we celebrate 25 years of #WorldBookDay on Thursday 3 March. To honour this wonderful day, we share our top reading tips and must read books.
Just like the body, the brain needs exercise to keep it healthy and active. Reading from a young age has a multitude of benefits and significance throughout different developmental stages in a child’s life.
To start reading as a passtime activity from a young age allows children to develop basic language skills and vocabulary, early exposure to reading is directly correlated to more academic success, improving comprehension and writing skills.
Books create questions and answers. Reading develops a child's imagination, empathy for others, and critical thinking skills. Through reading, children can go to places they have never been before and experience the world through the eyes of others, providing a better understanding of the world and the people in it.
According to the Matthew Effect of reading, children who do not develop their reading skills will find it hard to catch up and develop these skills later on. This follows the premise of the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer, in that those that love to read and learn will read and learn more as time goes by, whereas those that struggle to read will struggle even more as classmates and reading material gets more advanced.
With all the important benefits of reading, how then can we encourage children to read? Especially with the instant gratification of social media, video games and more!
Here are our tips to get your children reading:
1. It is important to remember is that a love of reading should be encouraged; it should be seen as a fun, stress-free- relaxing activity, not a chore.
2. Reading aloud to young children can be a precious adult-child bonding experience, and is a great way to start children learning. This can also model the behaviour and lead to children reading aloud to younger siblings.
3. Sharing book recommendations with your children is also a precious bonding experience, even for older children, and can lead to discussions about favourite books, and more in-depth understanding of what they have been reading.
4. No child dislikes reading, they only dislike the books they have tried so far. That is why it is important to try to find books that will appeal to your child’s interests. Try to encourage your child to read series books, so that once they finish there is another book to dive back into.
5. Surrounding your child with a selection of books and ensuring the books are not too challenging, will ensure they are not deterred. These can be stored in a cosy reading nook.
Looking for some inspiration?
Our wonderful team of Private Tutors in Dubai share their favourite must-read books
George Grace - Red Rising by Pierce Brown
Jordan McCabe - The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins
Carlamarita Hazelgrove - The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz
Lydia Fischer Dooley - Julius by Daphne Du Maurier and The Origins of the Suffragettes by Emmeline Pankhurst