Dr. Jane Healy is clear in her cautions to AVOID “Too much television—particularly at ages critical for language development and manipulative play—can impinge negatively on young minds in several different ways including the following:”Higher levels of television viewing correlate with lowered academic performance, especially reading scores. This may be because television substitutes for reading practice, partially because the compellingly visual nature of the stimulus blocks development of left-hemisphere language circuitry. A young brain manipulated by jazzy visual effects cannot divide attention to listen carefully to language. Moreover, the ‘two-minute mind’ easily becomes impatient with any material requiring depth of processing” May 1998 AAP News
So now I have Four questions to ask.
What have you been reading lately?
When was the last time you read a book?
Are you a wide reader?
Could that cautions for the kids can be applied to adults?
In a gathering, you can tell who the wide readers are. Wide readers think and speak well. They win the admiration, respect, and good opinion of others.
Reading expands the mind. In fact, many people consider it as one of the satisfying pleasures of humans, for it involves physical as well as mental activities.
Reading is primarily a mental activity. After all, you read with your mind and use your imagination to paint the setting of the detective thriller you are reading. You use you mind to imagine the pain that the main character experiences as the story unfolds. You bring into play the different arguments and ideas brought up by the author in that self-help book you are holding.
To read effectively, reading helps you develop a wide vocabulary through extensive reading. A skillful reader has a wide recognition vocabulary. He may not know exactly what every word means, but he will have a good general idea of the meaning of the sentence.
Reading makes you alert and curious about new words. Other readers develop the dictionary habit. Every time they come across a strange word, they try to figure out what it can possibly mean by the context. If they cannot do this, they refer to the dictionary.
Likewise, reading develops intellectual curiosity by exposing you to a variety of materials. You learn to read by reading books of increasing difficulty and variety. As in other forms of activity, you learn by actually doing.
Reading trains you to have an active and open mind. Merely grasping the writer’s idea is not enough. You must make a positive response to what you read. Be an active, not a passive, reader. Develop the habit of drawing your own conclusions, the habit of active thinking, of agreeing or disagreeing with the author. Keep your mind open; understand and weigh the ideas that you read. A practical part of active reading is the drawing of conclusions.
Allow me to share four basic rules for effective reading and better comprehension:
1) Try to read more and more. Remember the saying that practice makes perfect. Practicing in the correct way makes perfect.
2) Develop the habit of reading for main ideas. Look for the subject and predicate. Do not waste time on details or little words.
3) Learn to read with focus and concentration. Think of what you are reading. Do not let your attention wander somewhere else. Good readers read with understanding.
4) Learn to budget your time. Experiment with your reading time. Try purposely to read faster. Give yourself a time limit on specific material that you read.
Reading is a stimulating mental activity. It expands your reality and capability. You have so much to gain in discovering the joys of reading. Go ahead; grab a book right now!
Words to live by:
Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body -Sir Richard Steele.