The act of reading books has benefits that last long after the final page of childhood.
BRAIN FOOD: YOUNG BOOK LOVERS GROW BRAIN TISSUE AS THEY READ
To build muscle or endurance, you lift weights, run, bike. You exercise. There’s a way to bulk up your brain strength, too: Books. Reading is like doing burpees for your brain. Especially if you start young.
A Carnegie Mellon study found when kids get intensive reading instruction early on, brains physically rewire themselves. Brain scans of 8-to-10-year-olds showed an increase in the quality of their white matter, the brain tissue which carries signals through the nervous system so information can be processed.
This could be because focused reading causes a significant spike in blood flow to parts of the brain used for complex tasks. And reading’s benefits only build from there, making us better writers, exercising our memory and expanding knowledge of words themselves.
And starting out with a great vocabulary gives children a leg up. Their vocabulary stays at a higher level than their classmates’ as they get older. As we know from other research, students who are seen as exceptional in school get more positive feedback from teachers and better in-class opportunities.
It matters what you read, too. Read the article in its entirety here.
READ ALOUD. CHANGE THE WORLD
The reason I was excited to share the above article today is because it’s National Read Aloud Day. What better way to celebrate literacy is there, than to cuddle close with your precious kids and read out loud together?
Every year, on February 1st people all around the globe read aloud together and share stories to advocate for literacy as a human right that belongs to all people.
Whether you’re parent, teacher or caregiver, there are many ways to participate. I invite you to check out the details here.