The outbreak of the novel coronavirus has impacted each of us. Apart from the feelings of dread and gloom that accompany pandemics and sickness, it has also disrupted our way of everyday life. If things have been as tough as they have, on us grownups, one can only imagine how the kids are processing it.
While schools across the country have closed down in the interest of safety, the impact this will have on the development of our children is unfathomable. This holds especially true for our young ones who depend on the school curriculum to teach them the very basics.
A child absorbs information much like a sponge – the more knowledge you offer, the more they’ll soak it in. Therefore, developing the habit of reading early on is an invaluable asset, one that should not be overlooked, even amidst the chaos. Here are some reasons to introduce your child to the wonderful world of reading:
1. Reading and writing are the foundation of formal education. Children who begin reading at a young age gain an academic edge over their peers.
2. Children who read have an all-around better command of the language, from accelerated comprehension skills to improved pronunciation.
3. Research shows that readers are better communicators. With an expansive vocabulary at their disposal, along with exposure to different perspectives, it is no wonder that children who read can articulate their thoughts better.
4. Reading helps develop useful traits such as concentration, empathy, and patience, all of which will take your child a long way.
5. Reading is also a great way for you to bond with your child. According to a 2019 study by the Journal of Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics, parents who frequently read to their children have reported ‘fewer disruptive behaviors’.
How do you get your child to start reading?
According to the British Council, ‘graded readers’ or ‘readers’ are books that have had the language level simplified to help second language learners read them. Graded readers allow students to understand how language is constructed. They can recognize real examples of how sentences are combined to form paragraphs and how paragraphs are arranged to form texts. By reading longer texts students will have the opportunity to see language as a way to communicate ideas and opinions.
Ania Kolbuszewska who has been involved in English language teaching and training for nearly 30 years says that graded readers are short and focused, which means learners don’t lose interest and are able to complete the book, giving them a real sense of achievement. She goes on to say graded readers carefully introduce learners to new vocabulary in context. This allows them to infer the meaning of new words without having to reach for a dictionary.