Reading effects brain functioning in more ways than you think

Thursday, May 5th, 2011

Recent reading research has revealed reading has an effect on a lot more than just opening our minds to the world around us. Different parts of our brain responsible for listening, perception, and problem solving are effected by our ability to read too.

How could this research impact parent involvement and early intervention as early as Pre-school?

These recent research findings suggest there are significant brain functioning differences between readers and non-readers. Studies on listening, visual perception and problem solving skills according to the latest brain research are significantly stronger in readers and those exposed to pre-literacy skills. Readers were also found to be more successful in all other subject areas such as math, science and history.

The good news is that brain growth is not fixed. Adult literacy classes can and do make a difference.  Adults in this study who become literate later in life also  showed increased success in all of these areas when they became readers.

Will this study and others like it make a footprint on early childhood education practices?

Suggestions to early childhood teachers, administrators, and interested policy members should focus on daily exposure to language through discussions. The more parents have discussions about anything and everything with their children the better. Our brains develop beginning language patterns to remember how words sound through consistent exposure to them. Discussions pave the way for stronger brain pathways making learning to read a more natural literacy transition.

What consistent discussions do you have with your young children?

What advice do you have for new parents to begin the discussion pathway with their child?

What was the funniest discussion you’ve had with your little one?

We’d love to hear your thoughts!

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