"Why are you buying books for him to read now? Hasn't the school reopened? Books outside the school syllabus is an unnecessary distraction." If you are a parent who believes in this dictum, think again.
Reading is a means of survival, if you give it some thought.
Children as they move from lower to higher grades, they are expected to read and comprehend a lot more. Without the language ability to read fluently and understand text, they tend to suffer in school. This has a huge impact on confidence thus making it a vicious circle. Reading needs to be a basic routine activity like breathing, eating, drinking...early on. This makes the task of decoding and understanding text in a fun pressure free context such as reading story books in appealing genres, a lot more effective. It goes a long way in boosting self confidence and enhances your child's abilities to handle a variety of texts. As they grow and read more outside of school, their reading comprehension abilities grow and so does their confidence.
Reading to unwind
We had once invited the renowned children's book author, Asha Nehemiah to the Young Readers' Club to talk to us about reading in general, what she likes to read, how reading has a connection with writing and ofcourse to learn more about how she creates her marvellous books. During that very memorable session, she shared with us that she sometimes reads upto three books at a time. She chooses to read different books depending on her mood at different times each day. She shared how she enjoys unwinding before bed, by reading poetry and how she finds it soothing. The children were intrigued that it is even possible to read multiple books at the same time. They were used to reading utmost one book that sometimes went on for weeks although it was small. The reason was either that the book was not appealing or they simply did not have the habit of making time for reading everyday.
The children were intrigued that it is even possible to read multiple books at the same time. They were used to reading utmost one book that sometimes went on for weeks although it was small. The reason was either that the book was not appealing or they simply did not have the habit of making time for reading everyday.
Everyone of us are busy. It's not just the children who have to manage school and other class schedules. Even for an author, there are multiple tasks that they need to attend to, meet deadlines, attend meetings, the list goes on. Yet they find time to read. Why because reading is a window to the world, supplies information for ideas, delivers on joyful experiences, thought provoking moments, uplifting moments, enhance awareness and so on.
Everyone of us are busy. It's not just the children who have to manage school and other class schedules. Even for an author, there are multiple tasks that they need to attend to, meet deadlines, attend meetings, the list goes on. Yet they find time to read.
Reading to be entertained
Before the television found its way into our homes, people wound up their days perhaps listening to the radio and reading bedtime stories or telling them stories at bedtime. Enid Blyton's collection for instance has a beautiful collection of stories that are perfect for bedtime - simple, enjoyable and light stories. Being tucked in every night with one of those stories is one of my favourite memories from childhood.
Does a day pass in your household now without turning on the T.V? No matter how busy schedules are, there is always time for T.V. Given the extensive variety that is available today on T.V there are different kinds of programs suited for varied interests. Children spend time looking for T.V programs in their preferred genres. It helps as a stress freeing mechanism. Exam or no exam, a little time for T.V is generally made. If it is so easy to make time for one's favourite show, why not for one's favourite book or author?
Is it because, there are no favourite books or authors?
Is it because there is no access to a large variety of books, while there is easy access to a variety of TV programs?
Is it because, no one is reading in the house? But, everyone is watching TV.
Reading to be perceptive
Story books have different kinds of characters with a purpose. Ofcourse that's how a story can be interesting. But it has another very important role to play. Different characters help bring different perspectives to the story. They help the reader understand the story, the setting, the content in a variety of ways. Books such as Wonder by R.J Palacio and the other books in the same series that talk about the same story but from the perspectives of different characters, it helps the reader understand that multiple perspectives depict the truth. There hardly is only one correct perspective.
Discussions help to discover even the smallest of details:
Recently at the Young Readers' Club, the young readers decided to experiment with a graphic novel from the Sherlock Holmes series. Based on the crime scene, several theories came up contributing several perspectives of the same scene. The readers discussed each theory, thought about why some theory did not fit in well and in the process tried to pick even the smallest of details that could have been easily ignored. This helps in understanding the importance of attention to detail.
Reading to write better
Be it creative writing or writing to communicate something, the ability to remember that writing needs to be written in such a way that the reader can easily understand and absorb the intended meaning. Some writing applications require descriptive writing. Let's take a simple example of formal letter writing that is given as an exercise in school. Topics generally are in the lines of write to so and so complaining about an issue, let's say stray dog menace.
Here are two possible approaches to writing the crux of the letter:
We have several stray dogs running around. They are dangerous and if bitten humans will get rabies. Please do something.
Stray dogs are a common sight especially near the overflowing garbage bins. They seemed to have cordoned off the garbage collection area of their own. They are a ferocious lot of five dogs that snarl at anyone who tries to approach the bin. As a result, the corporation workers have been reluctant to clear garbage bins which has added to our woes. We are not able to step out without the fear of being attacked by these dogs. They even tend to run behind bikes and cars causing a lot of noise in the otherwise quiet community.
The ability to provide adequate detail to ensure the desired impact on the reader requires reading a lot to understand different approaches and try using the same when it comes to writing.
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Both weekday and weekend batches at the Young Readers' Club are available. While this program is for the 8-11 age group, the Young Executives' Club program offers soft skills development course for the 12-14 age group. New batch starting in May. Need more information? Please fill in the contact form below and we will reach out to you asap.