Beyond vocabulary expansion, your child can benefit more from reading than he/she knows. Here are 5 more benefits to reading that you may not have known about:
More than meets the eye.
Reading’s just identifying at a bunch of words scrawled on to a page right? What’s so good about that? Well, beyond just being able to recognise words, reading has numerous cognitive and psychological benefits that can help your child:
1. Improved concentration
It’s a crazy digital world out there, and with so many bits of information coming our way at lightspeed, our attention is often divided. For your child, it may be no surprise that within a single 5-minute duration, he/she could swipe through their social media, chat with their friends on messaging platforms, and watch a short video. This behaviour often decreases their attention span, and lowers their productivity. Reading a book however, streamlines their attention on a single activity; a single story. Especially if it’s a book that your child is absorbed in, reading can transport them to an entirely different world. Getting your child to read just 30 minutes a day can improve their concentration tremendously and you might be surprised by how focused they can be.
2. Reduced stress levels
If your child is stressed from school, cosying up to their favourite book can help them to relax. Losing themselves in a great story can help them forget about their stress (momentarily). In fact, according to researchers from the University of Sussex, they found that reading a book for only 6 minutes helped to reduce stress levels by 68% as compared to taking a walk (42%), or listening to music (61%). The authors reported that being completely distracted (even for awhile), can help relieve stress and calm oneself.
3. Mental stimulation
The brain is a muscle, and just like any muscle group, we have to work it to strengthen it. Reading helps to keep the brain mentally stimulated which therefore strengthens the brain. Keeping the brain active and engaged in mentally stimulating activities helps keep your child’s brain cognitively stimulated which helps to improve and protect memory functions.
4. Strong analytical skills
Once your child gets well acquainted with reading, chances are, they will develop the ability to analyse plots and compare them with other books they have read before. They begin to formulate their own views to determine whether they thought it was a well-written piece or not; they begin to form opinions on the characters and the storyline. What’s better is if you, as a parent, join in the fun and discuss the book with them. Varying opinions can help hone their analytical skills and critical thinking.
5. Knowledge and perspective
Reading can present your child new knowledge and a new perspective of the world they had never seen or thought about before. Everything your child reads will fill their head with new bites of information that will stay with them. Moreover, it presents a new point of view that your child may not have known before. An added bonus is if the story is told in a fun manner while imparting new information to your child. The Plano Adventures tells the story of Professor Plano and his two friends, Zed and Zee. The trio go on journeys into the unknown to thwart the evil Lord Myopia. Through their exhilarating adventures, The Plano Adventures teaches its young readers about the adverse effects of excessive device use in this digital world. There are 5 books in the series, and each book has a specific theme; from protecting your eyesight to prevent myopia from progressing, to the damaging effects of cyberbullying. You can buy the whole set of 5 books in Singapore at Kinokuniya, Times Bookstores, and at Popular. Alternatively, buy them online on Amazon or on Book Depository.