If we had to choose one of the best things in life, many of us would choose reading. It also allows us to become part of so many different, exciting stories. Reading is one of life’s pleasures, which apart from being a leisure activity is also a great habit that brings many benefits to children and adults.
Reading has many benefits, such as improving brain functions or reducing stress levels. Moreover, it improves comprehension, writing skills, and helps us to expand our vocabulary and is useful when it comes to learning new languages.
The best way to make reading become a habit is by sharing this passion with your children from a very early age. This way, little ones see it as an everyday activity that they can enjoy alone or in company.
Weekly Reading Sessions in the WISS Library
At the Western International School of Shanghai, reading practices have an essential place in our educational program. That’s why we host weekly reading sessions in our library for our Primary and our Early Years students. This time in the library introduces students to the pleasure of reading and encourages students to become more interested in this pleasant activity because set off on exciting adventures with extraordinary characters through stories from all over the world. The WISS library holds more than 5000 books in Mandarin and over 2200 books in languages other than English.
Each academic year, we remind everyone about the importance of reading by celebrating WISS Book Week, during which we bring the world of books closer to our students through exciting, fun, and cultural activities.
For one week, reading is given special focus at WISS. This way, we help our students feel the pleasure and joy of reading, making it their favorite leisure activity. However, not all children show interest in reading and prefer to spend their free time on activities that have nothing to do with books.
This issue worries many parents, especially those who do love reading. What can we do to encourage children who don’t seem interested in reading?
How to Encourage Good Reading Habits
The Head Librarian at WISS, Jenelle Kirchoff, thinks that “one of the best ways to motivate children to read is to give them choices. Often, we want to guide our children to a certain genre or topic. If we let children choose their materials, it helps increase their interest level”. Also, she considers that one of the best ways to motivate children to read is to read to them at night. “While parents often do this for younger children, we stop doing this as children get older; even pre-teens enjoy having chapters read to them!”
For her, reading has a lot of benefits for children, that’s why we should encourage an appetite for reading. Jenelle points out that, “In addition to increasing vocabulary and knowledge, reading helps decrease stress and improve memory. And,” Jenelle continues, “reading books in more than one language is very beneficial for kids because reading books in a second language is an excellent way to learn grammar rules.”
If you want to learn more about how the Western International School of Shanghai celebrates reading, don’t miss their blog where you can read about WISS Book Week.