Research studies have indicated that development of early literacy skills can be a key indicator of how well a child will do later in life.
90 percent of a child’s brain growth occurs during birth and four years of age, so it is suggested parents begin reading to their child at birth.
Reading aloud introduces the patterns of language and develops vocabulary.
Reading to a child just 20 minutes each day will enable him or her to hear one million words in a year and will expand his or her vocabulary by one thousand words.
Research indicates a connection between the development of language competence and motor skills.
Reading aloud helps a child develop a longer attention span and encourages the art of listening.
Reading aloud together will develop a special bond between a parent and child. Touch between parent and child is very important to the development of the brain and the child’s emotions.
Children who are read to become readers and are more likely to succeed in school.
Reading aloud provides cognitive, emotional and social development.
Sharing stories introduces and keeps alive the cultural heritage of our own traditional tales and those of other cultures.
Lewis Carroll, of the famed Alice in Wonderland, called stories “love gifts.” Sharing a story is giving a gift. It is a shared experience that produces a relaxed, peaceful feeling.
Just 150 years ago, children were usually not allowed to set foot in libraries.
PA libraries have not only taken up the challenge of encouraging young readers, but of addressing broader education needs. No longer just warehouses for the written word, libraries provide a broad range of resources to level the educational playing field for all who come in the door.
Libraries are tireless supporters of high-quality early childhood education. Early childhood education is a logical starting point in meeting the challenges of today’s knowledge-driven society and economy, and increasingly libraries are important partners in delivering early childhood education.
Evidence demonstrates that children who are “ready” when they enter elementary school generally succeed at higher educational levels. Communities and governments certainly benefit because studies have shown that child readiness saves public money through lower costs for remedial education, welfare and the criminal justice system.
Pennsylvania’s libraries echo the bottom-line conclusion of a report by Fight Crime: Invest in Kids Pennsylvania. The report asserts: “Investments in quality child development are money-savers, not budget-busters.”
Pennsylvania’s libraries are in the forefront of helping lead children into lives of learning and contributing to society for themselves and succeeding generations – and thereby changing the world.