As of today, it’s finally March, which means it’s the first day of National Reading Month! As you might have guessed, this may very well be our favorite month here at Bookroo because the entire country is celebrating reading and its importance! In honor of this auspicious month, we’re hosting Bookroo’s 30 for 30 Reading Challenge, encouraging everyone to read for 30 minutes a day and record it in Bookroo’s new free reading log. To make the experience more fun for everyone, each day you read for at least 30 minutes and log it using our reading logs you’ll get an entry into each of our upcoming giveaways to win some sweet reading prizes including a Storybook Twist Kit, a Trio of Children’s Book Posters, a Baby/Toddler Quilt, and a full reading nook! Plus all participants will be sent some awesome downloadable posters and resources, so we’d like to invite you to join us for a month of reading.
But why is it important to read for 30 minutes you might ask? While any reading is better than no reading at all, take a quick look at this table.
A child who has been read to for 30 minutes a day since infancy has been fed more that 900 hours of brain food compared to the roughly 150 hours of a child read to only 5 minutes a day. Thats 750 more hours of nursery rhymes, fairy tales, stories, laughs, and words. Take a minute and think about it. Which child do you think would have the best vocabulary? The most exposure to new ideas? The greatest confidence in their ability to succeed at school? The greatest love of reading? Why does reading make such an impact?
Reading is food for the brain.
Just as we diligently work to keep our kids well-fed so they aren’t hungry and get all the nutrients their growing bodies need, we need to be diligently feeding their minds. Reading “provides one of the most enriching and complex brain activities available in life”. As children read and are read to their brains literally make connections between neurons, but also mentally and emotionally grow as they come to recognize how to appropriately respond to emotions and are exposed to new ideas. Books are to hungry brains as PBJs are to hungry tummies.
Reading improves (future) academic performance.
While we might all expect that reading enhances a child’s vocabulary (which, of course, it does), reading also improves their math skills! Everything in school involves reading, especially as children get older, and the ability to read and comprehend puts them in a great position across the board. SAT and ACTs? Yep–we can assure you it helps with that too from personal experience!
Reading makes you closer.
When you read together with your children, you often find yourself snuggled up on the floor or on a comfy couch, close together. You’re engaged in an opportunity for learning and entertainment together, and those quiet (or even not so quiet!) moments spent together build a bond and emotional trust that you can draw on when the going gets tough. But what about for those parents who don’t have the opportunity to be home with their children all day, and may feel a little cruched for time? According to Scholastic reading is “a gift for time-challenged parents who may feel guilty about missing special moments with their kids”. As you read together it’s not just time spent together, like watching a movie is. It’s time that you’re engaged, and interacting, and building a pool of shared experiences!
But why log your 30 minutes of reading?
I’m sure we’ve all heard before that there’s an accountability that comes with making goals, writing them down, and keeping track of your progress. That’s where recording your reading comes in. We’ve made our reading log free so that it’s accessible to anyone who wants to use it! You can easily record reading for any number of children, and track the # minutes read, the # books read, which books you read, the # pages you read… whatever it is that is meaningful to you and your readers! We’ve added some badges you can earn to mark your progress, and will be adding additional badges in the coming weeks and months!
We challenge you to set a goal for yourself, and for your children, to read or be read to for 30 minutes a day. Set the goal, commit, write it down, track your progress, earn entries into giveaways for awesome prizes in the month of March and let us know how it’s going! We’d love to hear!