Wednesday, November 23, 2011

I'm thankful for parents who read!

As a teenager, the furthest thing from my mind was being thankful that my mother read to my siblings and I each night when we were little. Sure, I had some vague fondness for the tales of Laura Ingalls Wilder, or Pippi Longstocking, but I didn't quite grasp that simply by reading to us my mother was actually giving us a competitive edge in school, and in life.

New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman calls attention to the role parents play in supporting what their children are learning from teachers in classrooms. He highlights research compiled by the Program for International Student Assessment that shows how being read to at a young age affects students' performance even into their teenage years.
According to the study, "students whose parents reported that they had read a book with their child 'every day or almost every day' or 'once or twice a week' during the first year of primary school have markedly higher scores [on international student assessments] than students whose parents reported that they had read a book with their child 'never or almost never' or only 'once or twice a month.' On average, the score difference is 25 points, the equivalent of well over half a school year."

Children are more motivated to read when the adults in their lives  value reading and share books with them.  When children enjoy reading they become better readers, learners and problem solvers for life.  Now that’s something to be thankful for!

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