Many thanks to all of our wonderful volunteers for taking time out of their busy work day schedules to read to a classroom of students one day a week. Not only are the volunteers engaging the students, their efforts are helping to support our dedicated teachers at Dorothy Hains Elementary School.
Reading aloud is fun, but that’s not why Communities In Schools is involved. Reading is a foundational building block needed by every student to achieve success in school. Unfortunately, not every student is read to or encouraged to read at home for a variety of reasons. Extra reading at school is a win-win for everyone!
Some reading factoids to think about.
- Reading aloud is widely recognized as the single most important activity leading to language development. Reading aloud builds word-sound awareness in children.
- Reading aloud gives children the opportunity to practice listening – a critical skill for student success.
- Reading aloud encourages children to use their imaginations.
- The more adults read aloud to children, the larger their vocabularies will grow.
- Reading helps children to learn and dream about the world around them and their place in it.
- Reading aloud introduces the language of books which is different from the language heard in daily conversations.
- Reading aloud builds motivation, curiosity, and memory.
- Reading aloud helps children develop positive associations with books and reading.
- Children who value books are more motivated to read on their own.
- Academic success is tied to a student’s ability to read and comprehend concepts.
A landmark study by Hart-Risley on language development documented that children from low-income families hear as many as 30 million fewer words than their more affluent peers before the age of 4. Many of these children enter school considerably behind their peers in reading skills and continue to have difficulty throughout their school lives, resulting in greater incidents of absenteeism, dropping out, juvenile delinquency, substance abuse, and teenage pregnancy – all issues that continue to perpetuate the cycles of poverty and dependency. Reading – it’s a big issue that can be improved considerably with support and help from the community.