Give The Gift of a Good Book
Dec 19, 2014
"Any book that helps a child to form a habit of reading, to make reading one of his deep and continuing needs, is good for him."
With only 6 days until Christmas, and Chanukkah in full swing, many people have completed their holiday shopping. What topped your child’s wish list this year? Something electronic?
Books aren’t always one of the top 5 requests, but they are so important to ignite a child’s love of reading. Keeping that passion for reading alive will continue to be a challenge for parents and teachers in the 21st century.
When we look at social media sites such as Twitter, we see that children hitting their tween and teen years communicating through tweets that offer less than 140 characters. As social media continues to reach younger and younger audiences, it will be educators and parents responsibility to promote “sitting down with a good book” in this changing digital landscape.
The Annie E. Casey Foundation released a report titled “Double Jeopardy.” The report outlines the importance of reading, especially at an early age. Students in the 3rd grade were used as the benchmark in the report. Sixteen percent of children who are not reading proficiently by this time do not graduate on time from high school. There is also a study by the National Research Council and Institute of Medicine that says the human brain develops faster during the first 5 years of life than at any other point. Studies also indicated that 85% of a child's intellect and personality are formed by age 5.
So how can giving your child a good book this holiday season help impact their future? Think about the impact and significance of a major holiday present being a book. Consider the ultimate toy: one’s imagination. Although the toys topping everyone’s lists can stimulate the imagination, will they develop it? Instead of another video game or Barbie, a book transports children to another world, and opens up their imagination to endless possibilities.
For younger children that book might be a board book or a short story. For older children, you might be purchasing an e-book for their Kindle. Regardless of the “how,” the “what” this holiday season should be a book; because a book is the gift that keeps on giving.
Imagine weeks or months of discussion about a magical place at the dinner table? Imagine countless nights sitting at your child’s bed reading a favorite book over and over. You might tire of Peter Rabbit, but each night your child gets a few minutes of your time - unplugged and uninterrupted. That’s priceless.
There’s still time to find that perfect book to share with your children. We hope you have a wonderful, joyous holiday season!