Read More Win More

Research confirms over and over again that kids that read more win more. Well, let me clarify. The benefits not only relate to academics but also to personal development. I will get into all the benefits in a minute. Let me tell you that as a dad, this was an area that I believe I failed in, look back when my children were growing up. What do I mean? I was unaware of how crucial it was for my kids to get ahead. 

I was a video and movie guy. This translated to my children. My daughter, fortunately, learned to love reading despite my lack of leadership. My wife was into books. Thank goodness. My boys were unfortunately just like me. Would you like to know who struggled and had a mediocre academic foundation? That would be my 2 boys as well as myself. My oldest developed a passion for reading much later. The younger boy still moves at such a fast pace that I remained concerned for him in this area. Thankfully, I developed a love for reading when I went back to school to finish my degree.  

When I was young, I looked at reading or schoolwork as something to get through so I could have fun. However, when I got the reading bug, it was as if a light went on. Learning developed my mind, vocabulary, and gave me the important answers that made me more valuable at work or in counseling others. It made me better. When I came to this realization, I felt so stupid. Upon further examination, as I looked back to the bookworms of my youth, they all had better-paying jobs, better credit, and were ahead of me in the hiring line.

Reading, in general, is a positive stimulus regardless of genre. However, for me, it is biblical, non-fiction, and poetry that serves me best. I want to read about the foundations for living well, to learn about history and how-to, and to understand human thoughts and passion. The biblical reading is a foundation that strengthens my faith and hope. Understanding history and learning how to do things gives me a practical core of operation to get things done. Finally, poetry is the rawest form of expression that I have ever found.

I want my children to be well-read for several reasons. The most important reason for this is to enable them to navigate life. I want them to know things. I want them to be able to draw on various resources. Well, read individuals sound more intelligent. They can usually argue their points better. By developing their vocabulary, they become better communicators, thus earning advantages in society and in the workplace. 

To learn more about the benefits that you and your kids get from reading, all you have to do is google it. There are numerous sources that confirm these points. The important thing is that you set the standard for your kids. If you have little ones, read to them. When they learn words and can tell you what they are, celebrate. When they read their first book, read out loud, or read without your prompting, celebrate. Reinforce this in their life. When they begin to read well, take them to libraries. Go online with them and research sources of books and appropriate sources of learning.

Let me assure you that I believe in kids getting outside, playing, and creating. However, scheduling or developing time to feed the mind is crucial. It will give them huge advantages as they go off to school. In addition to smarts, it can also serve in their protection and minimizing bully encounters. If your child excels academically, they may have opportunities to be grouped with students that show fewer discipline problems than the general population. Most behavioral problems in classrooms are not a result of the more intelligent child. I understand that there are medical conditions that can contribute to behavioral struggles. However, in the general population, the more advanced the class criteria, the less misbehavior tends to be a problem.

Does a love for books guarantee academic and life advantages? No. It does, however, increase probabilities which is the best that any parent bestows on their child. You cannot make them have a love for something, but you can encourage it. Repetition and consistency are crucial for developing skills. We usually love what we are good at. Children are the same. How can they get better at it? Do it. Practice. 

Your kids are looking for you to be an example. Therefore, it starts with you. You have to show them, not just tell them what they need to do. Reading will put them a new level of cognitive and academic development. Give them your best efforts to encourage this important part of their growth. Be the best dad possible.

Deacon