Having observed my 2 year old nephew playing ipad, who knows its features better than I do, the other day, I thought: would he love books as much as he loves that gadget in the future? I am not talking about the books that he will have to read at school and university; I am talking about serious fiction literature. I could not help but wonder: Will he even have any favorite books? And how can I help him to raise the love to literature?
The issue of reading generation is especially pivotal for the time being, since contemporary people are more likely to spend unlimited hours surfing on the Internet rather than reading books. According to the journal “Knigolube”, only 17% of Kazakhstani citizens are active readers who buy at least one fiction book a month. More sadly, Kazakhstan’s National Library revealed that the whole generation of young people, who are not even familiar with serious literature, has been formulated over the last 15 years. In addition, they claim that around 50% of the adult population does not read at all. These “book lovers” will definitely be the role models for their growing children. Consequently, there will probably be much more such “book lovers”, who think that reading is a hard work or an old-fashioned occupation.
WHY SHOULD WE CARE ABOUT READING?
According to “The reading Kazakhstan” project, reading is a core for individual’s knowledge, gaining professional skills, consciousness and cognitive, which molds the foundation of world view. Besides, it is a crucial element to reach cultural and national values.
I think reading books can be compared to a treasure that contain tons of gold, but is forgotten and only searched by limited number of people. Those who decide to seek for treasure will find golden benefits which develop verbal abilities, improve focus, memory, imagination and so on (“10 reasons why reading will save your life”).
SO HOW TO HELP CHILDREN READ?
1. Role-modeling is the best way to make children read. By teaching yourself to read, you teach your children.
2. Read stories with them. According to Bloch (1996), ‘listening to stories is the most crucial to later competence’ of children (p.5).
3. Do not demand children to read with the speed of light. Pay more attention if they do enjoy reading and comprehend to it.
CAN YOU ADD SOME MORE ADVICES?
Bloch, C (1996). EMERGENT LITERACY, MULTILINGUALISM AND EARLY CHILDHOOD DEVELOPMENT (ECD). Position paper prepared for the Education Sub-Committee of the Language Plan Task Group (LANGTAG).PRAESA, Faculty of Education, University of Cape Town, Private Bag, Rondebosch 7700
National Library of the Republic of Kazakhstan. “The reading Kazakhstan” project of 2010-2013. Retrieved from http://www.nlrk.kz/page.php?page_id=175&lang=1
10 reasons why reading will save your life. Retrieved from: http://whytoread.com/why-to-read-10-reasons-why-reading-books-will-save-your-life/