Reese Witherspoon, the famous Hollywood actress, had recently remarked that she goes insane in a bookstore and that “my heart beats hard because I want to buy everything”. This may be translated as nothing but love for books; pure delight in reading the written word. Have you tried to inculcate the same love for words in your child?
If you are working towards this goal, you will have a lot of fun in the way and derive many benefits for your child too.
Let us find out 10 benefits of reading for your child.
Reading stimulates the brain
“Better wear out than rust” is a famous saying and it rings very true for the human brain. It is well known that our brain, to its last functional day, remains a largely uncultivated area. We use a very tiny proportion of it.
However, reading allows maximizing the use of brain. It stimulates the cerebrum. Like the other body parts, the brain needs exercise too and reading provides wholesome exercise.
Improves your child’s vocabulary
While helping my child with some reading material, I sometimes come across words that are new to me. Well! Not many but certainly a couple here and there. Think how it can help our children expand their vocabulary.
A good reading session invariably increases our children’s word base. Sooner rather than later, they begin to put the words in use and the words become an involuntary part of their vocabulary. Does it not make them better speakers in public?
Hones the writer within your child
Human beings have the capacity to absorb word-settings. It comes to us from a very early age. When we read a lot, we start understanding how words should be placed in a sentence, how to create climactic paragraphs, how to build a readable story.
Thus, every act of purposeful reading is also an act of developing the writer within us. This particular benefit to your child cannot be overstated.
This is the age of multi-tasking. Imagine your child solving a Rubik’s Cube with his feet juggling a Soccer ball and his eyes partially trained on the television. What does this do to your child? For one, it increases his stress levels from a very young age, and two, it hampers his level of concentration.
While reading a book or a story, a child gets bound to its fictional world. This makes a child focus on the subject at hand for a considerable length of time. Naturally, it increases his focusing powers.
Makes a child calmer
Parents would agree that these are noisy times. Well! There can’t be a better word to connote the age we live in- noisy. There is a diversion waiting for your child at every corner and it seeks a response out of him, makes him wilder.
Their games have changed, their music has changed, and the ‘noise’ in their day-to-day activity has increased.
It then becomes very important to encourage the reading habit in your child. It is a sure way of making him calmer, more tranquil. Reading is also an effective remedy for rare cases of high blood pressure in children just as it is effective against mood disorders.
An entertainment that does not cost
Any entertainment your child seeks costs you. Sometimes, the money you fork out does not match up to the worth of the entertainment at all. Reading is different. You can do it for free (at worst a few cents) and yet it is one heck of an entertainment source. Those parents who do not agree have never seen their children read the Harry Potter series.
Everything can desert us- money, fame, love, health and peace. However, the knowledge that we earn through books stays with us. It becomes a pole star to guide us through life. Knowledge is a firm step towards wisdom. Why do children seek knowledge in their parents?
It is because it is very reassuring for a child to know that his parents have it in them to show them the way. From an early age, if a child gets into the reading mode, he is likely to gain a lot of knowledge before he is an adult. I talk about that knowledge which helps in life’s way.
Reading reduces stress in children
Do you consider this a funny subheading? Think again. No more can we say that stress is only for grown-ups. Children pass through real pressure situations. Most of it comes from the baggage of expectations we load them with.
While reading, they are transported to a virtual world where there is no stress, no pressure, only the magic of written words. Soon, the absorbing world composes them and reduces their stress levels.
Reading improves memory
Sometimes we are startled by the ease with which we can remember in detail a very old occurrence. It just brings us face to face with the power of memory. Memory works its way through neural pathways (synapses) and reading improves the functioning of these synapses in children.
The chemical acetylcholine present in between the axon and dendron area becomes more active if their brain is given the fodder of books. Well! To cut down on the technical jargon- reading helps in improving a child’s retentive memory.
Improves analytic reasoning
While reading a mystery novel, you may have got to the possible culprit before the writer revealed him. Sometimes, you may have criticized the writer for developing the plot poorly. All these are examples of how reading makes us sharper.
In children, reading raises the capacity to analyze a situation and broadens their perspective.
There is no substitute – reap the benefits of reading
Those who do not read trade in third-hand opinions. Those who read gather second-hand opinions and convert them into something of their own. Isn’t that “something of their own” called wisdom? Don’t keep your child away from books. Bring the book shelf to him if possible.
Be motivated to read yourself- perhaps with your kid. There is no bigger room in the world than the room for improvement and no better age to read than your age.
How much time does your child give each day to out-of-syllabus reading?