48 Percent

“The love of learning, the sequestered nooks,
And all the sweet serenity of books.”
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow


We hear so much today about the problems that kids are facing in school when it comes to reading. And yet, there’s such a simple solution — one that can help kids throughout their education and turn them into lifelong readers. What’s the answer? Reading aloud. Research shows that reading aloud is the single most important thing parents and caregivers can do to help prepare children for learning
how to read and how to learn. Some sobering yet hopeful statistics:*

From birth to age 3 are critical years in brain development and language skills: Vocabulary, pleasure and familiarity with the printed word, basic phonics, comprehension: Reading stories aloud builds all these crucial skills.

The number of words a kid knows when entering kindergarten is a key predictor of his or her future success.

More than one in three kids enter kindergarten without the skills
needed to embark on a voyage of lifelong learning.

Only 48% of all children in America are read to each day. More than 15% or 1.3 million kids are read to by family members fewer than three times a week.

Can reading aloud just 15 minutes a day make a difference? Yes, over
five years, it adds up to 27,375 minutes or almost 460 hours.

Research shows that reading physical books with a child fosters bonding, improves a child’s problem-solving skills, and nourishes the power of visualization.

Amazing, isn’t it, to think that reading just 15 minutes a day can make such a huge difference in a child’s life? I can still remember my excitement listening to my mom read to us at bedtime and the thrill of going to a library for Read Aloud programs. Simple pleasures and yet they mean so much, especially at a time when even babies are logging major screen time with their parents’ smart phones and iPads.

Let’s do what we can to help kids read on as we all write on.

* This information comes to us courtesy of ReadAloud.org.

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About karinwritesdangerously

I am a writer and this is a motivational blog designed to help both writers and aspiring writers to push to the next level. Key themes are peak performance, passion, overcoming writing roadblocks, juicing up your creativity, and the joys of writing.
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4 Responses to 48 Percent

  1. It’s so important to be read to as a child. One of my strongest childhood memories is from when I was around 5 and my mother for the first time read a “chapter book” to us (It was “Pollyanna”). I didn’t know what a “chapter” was. She showed me how a long book was divided into chapters, and labeled “Chapter 1,” Chapter 2.” I thought it was the most exciting thing I had ever heard of. What a clever idea! I’ve never forgotten how thrilled I was to think that a book could keep going and going, and I could keep track of where I was by way of chapters.

  2. Hi Martha,

    Thank you so much for sharing this lovely memory. It’s wonderful to think
    that the seeds of your love of writing and editing were planted so early.
    I cherish my memories of my mom reading to all of us as children and
    loved the idea that I could see the stories that she was telling us in
    my mind. This seemed such a magical thing: how words could leap
    from a page and find their way into my head and heart.

    Write on,

  3. Jacqueline Stearns says:

    Right on! My parents read to me. Daddy even made up stories of his own, and would recite them from memory.

    The problem my now 27year old nephew had was that in first grade they were taught phonetically, while in second they were taught the correct spellings of words. He was so confused!

  4. Hi Jacque,

    Thanks so much for sharing your memories of being read to.
    How great hat your Dad would make up stories — my husband
    David was always making up stories for Alex who loved them.

    I know what you mean about your nephew — when teachers
    switch gears, it can be very confusing!

    Write on,

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