My husband and I were walking along the sand during a Florida vacation recently, when something unusual caught my eye: an elderly couple, shaded by a colorful beach umbrella, each holding something odd in their hands.
“Look, Honey!” I said, pointing in astonishment. “They’re reading books!”
You remember books, don’t you – those rectangular things filled with pages of words? If it seems like fewer and fewer people are holding them nowadays, you’re right – a recent Pew Research Center report indicated that more than a quarter of American adults did not read a single book last year. And that includes Kindles, paperbacks, and even audiobooks. In fact, the number of people declaring themselves “non-readers” has nearly tripled since 1978.
You can blame TV, smart phones, and the internet for giving Americans something else to do, apparently. But, while all can be highly entertaining, nothing adds value to your life like reading for pleasure. Nothing else says that you’re well-educated either: Folks with a college degree read more, on average, than those who only finished high school.
But there’s much more to reading than showing people you’re smart. According to The Reading Agency, there’s a strong link between reading for pleasure and “educational outcomes”. In other words, reading makes you smarter. But wait – there’s more! Continue reading