Daron's Soap Box: Building the Foundations of Reading
BUILDING THE FOUNDATIONS OF READING
18 Sep, 2015
It is found that children, of parents who kept a lot of books and educational toys around the house and read to their children often, have more active brains than those whose parents didn't promote a reading culture.
Daron has a soap box moment - My Mum - My Hero…
As I look back on my growing up years, I now realise that my mother was a super hero. I mean she reared six children all who are successful in their own right and now have family of their own.
The thing that astounds me is that despite her busyness caring for a large family she still found the time for all of us. One of her priorities was to make sure that we all read to her each day and that she read to us. I would read Dora and Dick to her. I still remember when I learnt that big word...
Mum would read to us. This would generally be a story from the "My Bible Story" series by Arthur Maxwell. We must have read through that series a number of times. She would also often read to us from a good christian novel as well which we all enjoyed. Often a Friday night or a Sabbath afternoon was spent around her bed or on her bed listening to this story chapter by chapter.
Because of this regular reading time, Mum instilled in me a love of reading. I devoured the Mildura Church library and the Mildura Carnegie library during my time there. My favourite time during the holidays were the days I could spend in the Library reading all day. Oh the adventures I would have in the "Hundred Acre Wood", "The Magic Faraway Tree," the "Hardy Boys Gang," Huckleberry Finn" or "Treasure Island." "Kings and Princesses," "Dungeons and Dragons," "Paradise lost and regained"... Oh what fun.
Morals and ethics, right and wrong, justice, mercy and compassion seeped into my core as I travelled to far away places and spaces...time suspended as the adventure proceeded!
This love of reading has followed me into life. I still love getting lost in a good novel and I still read at least a chapter most mornings out of a book/journal in my area of passion, (Children and family ministries)
My mother launched me onto a platform to reach to places and heights that only she foresaw. She prophetically prepared a launching pad for that to happen. The power of reading is a gift that she bestowed and now must be passed on to those I know and mentor.
Now research backs up what my mother knew so long ago...
Recent research from the reading and literacy discovery centre at Cincinnati found that reading to your kids has a biological effect on their brains. MRI scans reveal that listening to stories read by a mom or a dad can actually change a child's brain biologically. This helps prepare them to learn academically and helps them socially when it comes to interacting with their peers.
The study also found that it was important for parents to keep a lot of books and educational toys around the house and read to their children often. These children are found to have more active brains than those whose parents didn't promote a reading culture.
From a religious perspective we also know that stories shape lives. Values and faith is passed on to our children through story, especially God's salvation story as found in the Bible. Sarah Arthur contends that "stories give our children the weapons they need to defeat the dragons." Our children need those weapons now more than ever!
Horowitz-Kraus (one of the researchers) said "there's no more secure environment for a kid than to be sitting close and reading with a parent. This new research provides evidence that it also helps a child's developing brain. Everybody wins."
Thanks mum for raising me up and investing in me… I am strong and where I am today because I stand on your shoulders!
(Daron gets off his soapbox and gets lost in a good book)