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Margaret Fuller has justly said “Today a reader, tomorrow a leader.” Remarkable leaders have countless exceptional habits - one of them, is reading. Just like any other muscle in the body, the brain requires exercise to keep it strong and healthy, so the phrase “use it or lose it” is particularly apt when it comes to your mind. The more knowledge you have, the better-equipped you are to tackle any challenge you’ll ever face. Good readers excel at life, conversely those that can’t read end up in dire circumstances. “Not all readers are leaders, but all leaders are readers. I love reading both because it’s enjoyable and it plays a critical role in helping me become a better leader.” are the words of Harry S. Truman. If you want to be a well-rounded human being capable of holding a conversation on a variety of topics, you need to be a reader. Books are there to open the world up for us; to take us out of our own environment and show us the realities of others out there. Some books have the power to change your mind and outlook completely. The more you read, the more your vocabulary improves. The more your vocabulary improves, the better you can express your own thoughts and feelings. Reading helps develop analytical skills. Reading, keeps the brain’s memorizing ability in practice. “The man who does not read good books is no better than the man who can’t.” – Mark Twain. Children can become members of local library and bask in the glory of the countless books available there for free. Libraries have books on every subject imaginable, and since they rotate their stock and constantly get new books, they will never run out of reading materials. “There are many little ways to enlarge your child’s world. Love of books is the best of all.” – Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Teaching a child to read books is one of the most important skills we can give them. Parents should begin reading to the child when they are very young. And put books around the house and keep them within easy their reach. Be a reader to grow a reader. Especially when they are young and so impressionable your child will value what you value. If you place importance on the frequency and pleasure of reading, you have a child who loves to read. Most libraries have several different story-times, specially programmed for different age groups they will have activities that are great for fine motor skills and print awareness. Librarians have been trained and educated to understand reading needs and are familiar with child development, current trends in children’s literature and the educational needs of young people. Put limits on screen time. Your child may not automatically pick up a book and spend the whole afternoon reading, but by limiting their time gazing at a screen, they will have developed the ability to concentrate on words on a page — vital for healthy brain development. As soon as they can write their name, get a library card. It will give your child access, ownership and ability. The confidence a preschooler will gain by choosing a book and then going to check it out all by themselves is priceless. Encourage your child to go to their school’s library. The more libraries involved in a child’s life, the merrier. If your child goes to the library regularly with their class, ask to see the book they are reading, discuss it, ask if they are enjoying it. Read to your child, listen to your child read, and talk with them about what they read. With this overview, reading aloud to children from an early age is so important, and should make it a motivating and meaningful experience and inspires them to become frequent readers. There is no more important activity for preparing your child to succeed as a reader than reading aloud together. Children learn to love the sound of language before they even notice the existence of printed words on a page. Reading books aloud to children stimulates their imagination and expands their understanding of the world. It helps them develop language and listening skills and prepares them to understand the written word. When the rhythm and melody of language become a part of a child's life, learning to read will be as natural as learning to walk and talk. Even after children learn to read by themselves, it's still important for you to read aloud together. By reading stories that are on their interest level, but beyond their reading level, you can stretch young readers' understanding and motivate them to improve their skills. Most children enjoy listening to many types of stories. When stories are complex, children can still get the idea and can be encouraged to ask questions. Taking the time to read with your children on a regular basis sends an important message: Reading is worthwhile. You may go through a period when your child favors one book and wants it read night after night. It is not unusual for children to favor a particular story, and this can be boring for parents. Keep in mind, however, that a favorite story may speak to your child's interests or emotional needs. Good stories will encourage a love for reading, with or without conversation. And sometimes children need time to think about stories they have read. Our goal is to motivate children to want to read so they will practice reading independently and, thus, become fluent readers. That happens when children enjoy reading. Knowledge is power, and books are full of it. But reading is more than just a practical tool, it enriches their minds. With the habit of reading, children can begin a lifelong relationship with the printed word, so they grow into adults who read easily and frequently whether for business, knowledge, or pleasure. “A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies . . . The man who never reads lives only once.” – George R.R. Martin