The Importance of Reading to Kids Beyond the Preschool Years

by , posted on January 12th, 2015 in The Reading Nook, The Tween Years

the facts about reading to kids

Last week, the New York Times reported findings from Scholastic’s Reading Report. According to the report, just 31% of kids ages 6 to 17 said they read daily for pleasure. It also noted that’s a 6% drop from four years ago.

We all know there are tons of benefits to reading for fun, so what can we do? Two things top the list. First, we can read to kids. Second, we can encourage schools systems to let kids read on their own at school:

“There were some consistent patterns among the heavier readers: For the younger children — ages 6 to 11 — being read aloud to regularly and having restricted online time were correlated with frequent reading; for the older children — ages 12 to 17 — one of the largest predictors was whether they had time to read on their own during the school day.”

And while experts admit they can’t say conclusively that reading aloud to older kids boosts reading comprehension, they do say it helps them develop background knowledge. And from a completely unscientific measure—personal experience—it’s also great bonding time:

“’It wouldn’t have to be reading’ to accomplish that, said Catherine Snow, a professor at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. ‘A two-minute conversation about something on television or something in a magazine or something that you’re reading yourself can also have some of the same positive effects as reading aloud.’”

So share a story with the kids tonight even if you think they’re too old. Chances are, they’re not.

You can read the full article here.

Catch other tips for raising a confident reader in our video below.

Also check out…
-Crafts and Activities to Celebrate National Book Month
-Social Media for Young Readers
-Smile book review

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One Response to “The Importance of Reading to Kids Beyond the Preschool Years”

  1. Sandra Says:

    January 13th, 2015 at 1:22 am

    Love this post! Another benefit of reading to them is that you can read a book that maybe is a little beyond their own skills at present. It provides lots of opportunities for discussion.

    Or if they are struggling a bit with fluency in reading, you can alternate reading paragraphs or pages. Or they can reread the paragraph you just read.

    And I’m a huge fan of modeling behavior like you note. Talk about what you are reading, have your books/mags around for them to see. Even talk about how “we’re a family who likes to read”.

    It all adds up to growing good readers.

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