When they could start to read by themselves, we sat with them, each of us reading our own books. When we went to restaurants with adult friends, we asked our children to bring along their favourite books. They could then have something to read before the food came, after they finished with their food, and when they were bored by the adults’ conversation.
We don’t have a lot of worldly treasures. The one thing that we have quite a bit of is books. All our three daughters love to read, although they have very different interests in books. One loves her books so much she would get upset with me if I wrinkle up her books. We would like to think that our reading with them when they were young have something to do with it.
I was therefore happy to read that a recent PISA study found that
- “15-years-old students whose parents often read books with them during their first year of primary school show markedly higher scores in PISA 2009 then students whose parents read with them infrequently or not at all.”
- “The performance advantage among students whose parents read to them in their early school years is evident regardless of the family’s socio-economic background.”
- “Parents’ engagement with their 15-year-olds is strongly associated with better performance in PISA.”
- Such parent-child engagements with positive associations include: “discussing political or social issues”, “discussing books, films or television programs”, “discussing how well children are doing in school”, eating main meals together around the table”, and “spending time just talking with one’s children”.
[The Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) is a worldwide evaluation in OECD member countries of 15-year-old school pupils' scholastic performance.]