In these busy times, when we don’t even have time to eat breakfast, it isn’t surprising that we have given up on reading … or rather we have forgotten the importance of reading. So aren’t we missing out on something? Of course, a lot more than you think!
Reading is the basic foundation on which academic skills of an individual are built, and that has been verified by various studies time and again. Most of the subjects we are taught in school are based on a simple concept – Read, Synthesize, Analyze and Process information.
While there is no doubt about the fact that reading is a priceless activity, it has been observed that its importance has been deteriorating rapidly of late. One of the most prominent causes for this is the technology boom, owing to which we end up spending most of our time in front of the television or computer screen.
Even our education system acknowledges the fact that reading is important for the development of an individual, and hence ‘it’ is considered a top priority in primary education. One needs to, however, understand that reading does NOT mean making it through your school textbooks to clear the approaching tests. Nor is it restricted to educational purposes only. You can read almost anything, including encyclopedias, novels, dailies, magazines, and so on. What you read is not important as long as you like doing it.
Whether you like fiction or non-fiction is not important; whether you like reading or not is!
Sadly, people nowadays seem to have totally lost interest in this activity. Children are busy with computer games and television, and adults are glued to their computer screen amassing the wealth of knowledge through Internet search engines. Reading does have its loyal fan following, but this fan base is fast disappearing. It seems like people have forgotten the importance of reading; if that’s the case, it calls for a revision of the same.
Why is the Habit of Reading Important?
~ The foremost thing — and undoubtedly the most important — is that reading improves your vocabulary, command on the language and, communication skills, as you regularly come across new words, phrases, idioms and, writing styles.
~ Reading books of a variety of subjects helps you add to your knowledge, which, in turn, helps you with different attributes of life.
~ Regular reading is also believed to boost creativity as it helps you think out of the box — look at the things from a different perspective. Studies have revealed that children, who read often have a better concentration ability than those, who don’t.
~ Good reading skills are directly related to good writing skills. An individual who doesn’t read will always experience a dearth of words when it comes to writing. Reading non-fiction is no doubt important as it helps you gain knowledge, but reading fiction is no less important. It is widely believed that fiction is a must for people in different walks of life — including business and banking — as it gives them a glimpse of several different perspectives.
The biggest difference between reading a book and watching a film is that the former gives you the scope to unleash your own creativity. In films, the concept is conceived by the writer-director duo and presented before you in a specific form. In case of books, on the other hand, the writer does conceive the concept, but you are given ample freedom to unleash the power of your imagination. Reading a book is in itself an exercise to sharpen your creative thinking skills and broaden your horizons as a writer. In fact, there are many people out there, who outrightly reject the premise of making films based on books as they believe it spoils the “experience”.
An individual not so keen on learning history is bound to take some interest in the subject after reading the biography of Abraham Lincoln or Theodore Roosevelt.
Importance of Reading for Children
With so many benefits to its credit, reading can well be considered one of those good habits that need to be inculcated in the child during the initial years. Reading doesn’t just enhance the child’s ability to comprehend various concepts with ease, but also develops his critical thinking skills thus making him think — and not get used to the habit of spoon-feeding.
Inculcating the Habit of Reading at Home
With so many distractions around, it isn’t surprising that people find it increasingly difficult to inculcate the habit of reading in their children – and that too when they themselves know how important it is. If you yourself are into reading, it won’t be a problem as your child is more or less likely to take interest in the same on his own. If not, it would be wise to start with the basics, like giving them children’s books with pictures or reading out for them. This does not just help generate interest in books, but also promotes word-sound awareness in children. You need to make sure that you take things gradually, because they will lose all their interest in this activity if they find it boring in the initial stages.
They say that a family that eats together stays together; the same applies to reading as well.
The habit of reading yields rich dividends, and that’s a fact which cannot be questioned. So it’s high time you find a cure for bibliophobia, i.e., the fear of books (especially thick books) and dive into the world of literature or whatever you like to read. In this world of competitiveness, it’s always advantageous to amass vast knowledge, and there is no better way to do so, but read.