In 1985 a US Department of Education Commission on Reading shared the
results of 10,000 research projects done over 25 years to get at the core of
what really works in terms of turning kids into skilled readers. Among its
primary findings was this:
"The single most important activity for building the knowledge required for
eventual success in reading is reading aloud to children."
Notice they didn't single out Baby Einstein or flash cards, phonics, homework
or worksheets. They discovered that reading aloud to children, both at home
and at school -- even after they can read for themselves -- was the
greatest predictor of success.
I am encouraged by this finding because reading aloud to children is the
core of our work in Guatemala. Kids love to be read to, and the more they
associate reading with fun, the more they read. The more they read, the
better they get at it. The better they get at it the more they like it...This is
our engine for developing a culture of reading in Guatemala.
So please (1) read to the children in your life and (2) continue supporting us
as we encourage the same in impoverished communities where books are
scarce and illiteracy is rampant.
Thank you for all you do to bring the joy of reading to children!
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