why read?

    Student A reads 20 minutes five nights of every week;
    Student B reads only 4 minutes a night...or not at all!

    Step 1: Multiply minutes a night x 5 times each week.
    Student A reads 20 min. x 5 times a week = 100 mins./week
    Student B reads 4 minutes x 5 times a week = 20 minutes

    Step 2: Multiply minutes a week x 4 weeks each month.
    Student A reads 400 minutes a month.
    Student B reads 80 minutes a month.

    Step 3: Multiply minutes a month x 9 months/school year
    Student A reads 3600 min. in a school year.
    Student B reads 720 min. in a school year.

    Student A practices reading the equivalent of ten whole school days a year.
    Student B gets the equivalent of only two school days of reading practice.

     By the end of 6th grade if Student A and Student B maintain
    these same reading habits,

    Student A will have read the equivalent of 60 whole school days

    Student B will have read the equivalent of only 12 school days.

    One would expect the gap of information retained will have widened considerably and so, undoubtedly, will school performance. How do you think Student B will feel about him/herself as a student?

    Some questions to ponder:

    Which student would you expect to read better?

    Which student would you expect to know more?

    Which student would you expect to write better?

    Which student would you expect to have a better vocabulary?

    Which student would you expect to be more successful in school....and in


    *If daily reading begins in infancy, by the time the child is five years old, he or she has been fed roughly 900 hours of brain food!

    *Reduce that experience to just 30 minutes a week, and the child's hungry mind lose 770 hours of nursery rhymes, fairy tales, and stories.

    *A kindergarten student who has not been read aloud to could enter school with less than 60 hours of literacy nutrition. No teacher, no matter how talented, can make up for those lost hours of mental nourishment.

    *Therefore...30 minutes daily = 900 hours
    30 minutes weekly = 130 hours
    Less than 30 minutes weekly = 60 hours

    Guess you now understand why reading daily is so very important.  Why not have family night reading?  It is great to just shut off the television for 20-30 minutes and read... and share.



     (Source: U.S. Dept. of Education, America Reads Challenge. (1999) "Start Early, Finish Strong: How to Help Every Child Become a Reader." Washington, D.C.