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The Power of Reading
I love books. I have been reading since I was in early grade school. Even before I was eligible to have a library card, I was already reading any story book I could get my hands into. I also made friends with a classmate who devours books for breakfast so I got hooked since.
Now I have a 6-year old who seems to be developing the same fondness that I have for books. He does not know how to read yet but he likes being read to. It has become mandatory that me and his Dad read to him at least 2 books (of his own choosing) each night before he sleeps. We read to him in the vernacular to be consistent with his school's curriculum to teach and enhance the mother tongue first before introducing a second language. I now appreciate those books that have both the English and Filipino translation as it saves us the trouble of translating it ourselves.
I want my son to appreciate books as much as I do and instill in him the value of reading as this may be beneficial for him in the future.
The Benefits of Reading
Cultivates the Imagination
My imagination works overtime when I am reading a book. My mind conjures up its own images of the characters and the settings of the story.
Stories like J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings, Terry Goodkind’s The Sword of Truth Series and J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series got my mind into overdrive with its magical worlds and characters.
Danielle Steel’s novels almost always made me cry as the dramatic parts of her stories can really tug at the heart.
Expands Your World
I do not have the means to travel a lot but books help me to ‘see’ the world thru the books I read. My most recent read, Stieg Larsson’s Millenium Trilogy, took me to Sweden where people love to eat sandwiches no matter what time of the day. This is an interesting information for someone like me who lives in a tropical country where rice is the staple food.
Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight Trilogy introduced me to the small city of Forks, Washington which is always covered by a blanket of rain.
Judith McNaught’s period novels (Kingdom of Dreams, Whitney My Love, Almost Heaven, etc.) opened a whole new world of kings and queens, princes and princesses, dukes and duchesses and the rest of the members of the European nobility.
Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code brought me to France while Angels and Demons took me to Rome.
Continuous reading can enhance one’s vocabulary especially if he has the habit of checking its meaning in the dictionary every time he encounters a new word. I am not exactly like that but sometimes I can infer the meaning of a new word based on how it was used in the sentence. And it gets validated when I encounter the same word used in the same manner in a different book.
Carolyn Keene’s Nancy Drew books taught me the word “sleuth”.
Sophie Kinsella’s Shopaholic series taught me about English expressions like “uber”.
Alex Garland’s The Beach introduced the term “Russian roulette” to me.
There is indeed a tremendous amount of knowledge that can be learned from reading. Knowledge that can empower one to tackle life challenges.
For now, me and hubby are combining our efforts to instill in our son the value of books and reading. I'm sure someday soon I will be the one begging him to put down the book he's reading and do his homework or some house chores he is tasked to do. (Memories of me and my mother suddenly pops in mind)