With summer fast approaching the English department would like to share the benefits that a summer of reading can bring:
Participation in shared reading groups (this could be as simple as parent and child reading the same book) is linked to enhanced relaxation, calmness, concentration, quality of life, confidence and self-esteem, as well as feelings of shared community and common purpose.
Higher literacy skills are associated with a range of positive societal benefits, including having a stronger sense of belonging to society and being more likely to trust others.
Studies have found that reading for pleasure enhances empathy, understanding of the self, and the ability to understand one’s own and others’ identities. For example, reading Harry Potter has been shown to improve children’s attitudes toward stigmatized groups such as immigrants, refugees, and members of the LGBT community.
Here are some tips to help increase your child’s engagement in reading this summer:
1.Make books part of your family life – Always have books around so that you and your children are ready to read whenever there’s a chance.
2. Join your local library – Get your child a library card. You’ll find the latest videogames, blu-rays and DVDs, plus tons and tons of fantastic books. Allow them to pick their own books, encouraging their own interests.
3. Match their interests – Help them find the right book – it doesn’t matter if it’s fiction, poetry, comic books or non-fiction.
4. All reading is good – Don’t discount non-fiction, comics, graphic novels, magazines and leaflets. Reading is reading and it is all good.
5. Get comfortable! – Create somewhere warm and cosy with your child, on a beanbag or on the sofa, or make sure they have somewhere comfy when reading alone.
6. Ask questions – To keep them interested in the story, ask your child questions as you read such as, ‘What do you think will happen next?’ or ‘Where did we get to last night? Can you remember what had happened already?’
7. Read whenever you get the chance – Bring along a book or magazine for any time your child has to wait, such as at a doctor’s surgery.
8. Read again and again – Encourage your child to re-read favourite books and poems. Re-reading helps to build up fluency and confidence.
9. Bedtime stories – Regularly read with your child or children at bedtime. It’s a great way to end the day and to spend valuable time with your child.
10. Rhyme and repetition – Books and poems which include rhyme and repetition are great for encouraging your child or children to join in and remember the words.
If you need some inspiration on what to read the following like has a wealth of book lists to help you with some inspiration.