THE IMPORTANCE OF READING
Author and translator: Revati
„One glance at a book and you hear the voice of another person, perhaps someone dead for 1,000 years. To read is to voyage through time.” (Carl Sagan, American polymath)
Though shortly after their first meeting Watson writes that Sherlock Holmes is not too literate, the famous detective is a learned man, who reads a lot and has many books. (You can read more about Watson's misconceptions on Holmes here: Characterization of Sherlock Holmes)
Reading is more than a learning activity. Difficulties in reading are independent from the level of intelligence, being dyslexic is a learning disorder.
Why is reading important for a child (and for adults, too)?
Reading is a must in life. We need it for orientation, for filling out documents, for telling information about ourselves (while seeking jobs, in curriculum vitae), for asking help.
Reading improves the mind. If our mind would be a muscle, we should exercise it. To understand written words is a way of improving our brain. Reading helps children to have better language skills and to learn to listen to others. Everyone is able to speak, but only a few can truly listen to what others say. The lack of attention can easily cause serious misunderstandings, we may lost our job or partner.
“Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers.” (Charles William Eliot, American academic)
Reading helps to discover new things. Books, newspapers, the internet are all great sources of data and information – to take them in we need the ability of reading. Who are good at reading, can accumulate knowledge.
Reading enhances imagination. TV channels and computer games offer information and we do not have to think. While dig in a book book we can travel to everywhere, we can do everything. We can be kings, servants, explorers, artists, there is no limit. Those who don’t read cannot experience all these wonders.
Reading supports creativity. When a child reads, he/she stops after a while and imagines the events, thinks on them. After finishing a story, he/she asks why it ended this way and not another. Sometimes the child even tries to draw the tales.
Reading helps to concentrate. It demands work from the brain. It helps to reason, to explain, to understand the unknown. If we want to escape from the boredom of everyday life, we only have to open an interesting book.
“To acquire the habit of reading is to construct for yourself a refuge from almost all the miseries of life.” (W. Somerset Maugham, British playwright, novelist and short story writer)
With reading our memory will be better. Those who read regularly, on a daily basis, improve their brains. Crossword puzzles help to prevent Alzheimer’s disease. Reading gives a kind of pride, what in turn enhances self-confidence.
Reading gives the feeling of self-esteem. Who are weak readers may have doubts concerning their own abilities. They may feel the whole world is against them. Their performance is weaker in other things too, because they cannot translate what they read, and they tend to give up their dreams. Reading gives an almost immediate result, and besides self esteem it gives joy too.
Reading expands our vocabulary. We learn new words and phrases and the way how and when to use them, and this way we can communicate more efficiently. Words have their own power. They convey ideas, and they are able to change the life of a man, a family, or even a country. Without reading we cannot understand the meaning of words, we cannot defend ourselves. Reading may effect our life or that of others.
Knowledge is power. People who do not read, know less about the world around them, so they are more easily governable. They cannot check whether the facts they are fed with are true or false. They rely on what they hear, so they can be taken in.
Reading is a great remedy against boredom. You have to care for the books you read, so you learn to take responsibility as well.
“The ability to read becomes devalued when what one has learned to read adds nothing of importance to one's life.” (Bruno Bettelheim, Austrian-born American child psychologist and writer)
" The importance of reading "
Cryptography and other interesting things about writing:
Sherlock Holmes, Conan Doyle and the scientific art of writing
How to think like Sherlock Holmes
Benedict Cumberbatch, BBC Sherlock series
Jeremy Brett: Sherlock Holmes, the Granada series