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Image by Chris Liverani

Turning Pages on World Book Day

Today we celebrate World Book Day, an annual celebration of authors, illustrators, books and the joy of reading. To honour this wonderful day, the staff at Carfax College share their love for reading with top literary tips, and must-read book recommendations.

Just like the body, the brain needs exercise to keep it healthy and active. Reading from a young age has a multitude of benefits and significance throughout different developmental stages in a child’s life.

To start reading as a pastime activity from a young age allows children to develop basic language skills and vocabulary, early exposure to reading is directly correlated to more academic success, improving comprehension and writing skills.

Books create questions and answers. Reading develops a child's imagination, empathy for others, and critical thinking skills. Through reading, children can go to places they have never been before and experience the world through the eyes of others, providing a better understanding of the world and the people in it.

According to the Matthew Effect of reading, children who do not develop their reading skills will find it hard to catch up and develop these skills later on. This follows the premise of the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer, in that those that love to read and learn will read and learn more as time goes by, whereas those that struggle to read will struggle even more as classmates and reading material gets more advanced.

With all the important benefits of reading, how then can we encourage children to read? Especially with the instant gratification of social media, video games and more!

Here are our tips to get your children reading:

1. It is important to remember is that a love of reading should be encouraged; it should be seen as a fun, stress-free- relaxing activity, not a chore.

2. Reading aloud to young children can be a precious adult-child bonding experience, and is a great way to start children learning. This can also model the behaviour and lead to children reading aloud to younger siblings.

3. Sharing book recommendations with your children is also a precious bonding experience, even for older children, and can lead to discussions about favourite books, and more in-depth understanding of what they have been reading.

4. No child dislikes reading, they only dislike the books they have tried so far. That is why it is important to try to find books that will appeal to your child’s interests. Try to encourage your child to read series books, so that once they finish there is another book to dive back into.

5. Surrounding your child with a selection of books and ensuring the books are not too challenging, will ensure they are not deterred. These can be stored in a cosy reading nook.

Looking for some inspiration?

Our wonderful team of educators share their favourite must-read books: 

Claire - Great Expectations by Charles Dickens "This timeless masterpiece weaves a tapestry of emotions and societal intricacies that left me spellbound from the first page to the last. Dickens's brilliant storytelling takes us on a journey through the life of the unforgettable protagonist, Pip, whose coming-of-age tale is as poignant as it is relatable."

Mehreen - Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling

"The Harry Potter series is what inspired my love for literature. Let's raise our wands this National Book Day to the Harry Potter series, a treasure of magic, mystery, and the timeless lessons of friendship, bravery, and the power of choice. J.K. Rowling's spellbinding tales have not just captivated readers worldwide; they've conjured a gateway to a lifelong love of reading. We recognize the Harry Potter series as a shining example of how literature can light the spark of curiosity and bring people together, sparking discussions and forming communities."

Angus - The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger "This is a must-read for anyone navigating the complexities of growing up, using a raw and honest narrative that takes you on a journey through the challenges of adolescence. Salinger's masterful storytelling makes this novel a timeless classic that resonates with readers of all ages."

Naseeba - Borderlands by Gloria Anzaldua "My favorite book is Borderlands by Gloria Anzaldua. I love this book as it looks at language as a source of political and cultural power. Through poetry and a semi autobiographical narrative, Anzaldua celebrates being multilingual. She grapples with tensions between different languages."


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