“To acquire the habit of reading is to construct for yourself a refuge from almost all the miseries of life”- William Somerset Maugham
As the saying “Reading is a pleasure, books are a treasure”, reading books forces you to learn new words, to think new thoughts. Reading books is probably one the most beneficial and feasible activities that anyone can do. It is through books that we can discover new ideas, learn concepts, and know about places and people. Books help to relax the mind and soul and once we learn to make it pleasurable, we are on the right road to read everything!
Books have at all times and in all ages been a great source of knowledge, of happiness, of pleasure and even moral courage. In today’s world with so much more to know, learn and the need for a conscious effort to compete, the importance of reading books is now much more than just a hobby.
With television, cinema, i-pads taking up a great deal of attention of children, teenagers and even adults for that matter, reading books is slowly dying out. Reading books is something that kindles the child’s imagination. When they watch TV or see a movie, they are actually looking at things happening. On the other hand, reading story books or fiction is something that opens their imagination doors.
The simplest way to make sure that we are raising literate children is to teach them to read and to show them that it is a pleasurable activity. That means, we parents should find books that they would enjoy. Giving access to those books (not necessarily through buying but also through libraries) and telling them to read.
It is our responsibility to get our children climb on to the reading ladder; anything that they enjoy reading will move them up, step by step, in to knowledge, imagination and ultimately better understanding of themselves.
As mentioned earlier, reading fairy tales, folk tales, fictions, and adventure stories will take their imagination to a different level. They create a world and people in it and look out through their imaginative eyes! Children get to feel things, visit places and worlds that they would never know otherwise.
Books are about freedom – Freedom to read, freedom to imagine, freedom to think and communicate. Books are about education (not a process that finishes once they leave school/university), about entertainment, about access to information and about knowledge.
Books are the way we communicate with dead! Yes! the way through which we learn lessons from those who are no longer with us. There are tales that are older than most countries, tales that have outlasted the cultures and generations.
We as parents/ adults have responsibilities to the future. Responsibilities and obligations to our children, to the future adults these children will become, to the world they are going to face. All of us- as book lovers, parents, teachers, bloggers, writers,as citizens- have obligations.
- Obligation to read for pleasure. It is our responsibility to show our children; the younger generation that reading is a good habit. Everything a child learns starts at home, with the family. Unless and until there is parental involvement children will not develop reading. And above all reading is contagious! At least in children’s perspective.
- Obligation to read aloud to our children. We need to develop patience to read them stories we already are tired of. To read it in a tone and make it interesting to them. This kind of kindles them to listen more and ultimately draws them to read on their own!
- Obligation to support and use libraries. Encourage children to use school libraries. Encourage children to develop a mini library at home.
- Obligation to use the language. Help our children learn new words, find out what words mean and how to use them.
Reading books is something that not only helps to acquire knowledge but also to groom their personality.
The value of reading and its imaginative power is beautifully conveyed by Einstein’s words.
Once when he was asked on how we could make our children intelligent. His answer was as simple as this “if you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales: if you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales”
I hope we can give our children a world in which they will read books, be read to, imagine and understand.
*images courtesy:google images