How Reading Can Make A Child Culturally Savvy

How Reading Can Make A Child Culturally Savvy
This post was written by Kendra P.


Reading is one of those pleasures that accompanies you for the rest of your life. Those who learn to get immersed in reading when they are young are never at a loss for something to do. Of course, a person can spend a lot of time watching TV or socializing as well. But watching TV is a passive activity and socializing, though necessary for a full life, doesn’t necessarily enlarge your mind. Reading, on the other hand, can always expose you to something new. It expands your world view, making you aware of the vast sea of humanity that lies right outside your front door.

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Through reading, you can learn about new cultures. And it’s fun to start this process early when you have children. Grimm’s fairy tales were originally written in German, but they’ve become popular the world over in their English translations. Similarly, there are a number of Chinese fairy tales that will fascinate and enchant your child. Whether the story contains spirits that ran away into the forest or wise men whose sayings came true, they all have one thing in common: human interest. Orphans, young girls who are ill-treated and village simpletons are given a chance to prove themselves.

By reading Chinese fairy tales, your child will learn that there are people in other parts of the world who experience the same emotions and undergo the same hardships as those who live next door. In a world that is becoming increasingly smaller and cosmopolitan, exposure to a new culture can be useful to your child when it comes to interacting with other children at school. Kids who learn to be comfortable around other children, including those from different parts of the world, grow up to be more tolerant and more culturally savvy, qualities that can help them in certain life situations and even at work.

Nowadays, many companies boast that they are “multinational,” and they want people who are comfortable making conversation and cutting business deals with people from other cultures. With the rise of “offshoring,” more and more workplaces have started having offices at home and abroad. You might think that your child has all the time in the world to develop the skills necessary to participate in this changing world, but it doesn’t hurt to start early.

Reading about different cultures helps to keep a child interested in the process of reading as well. Eventually, your child is going to grow tired of hearing the same fairy tales read out before bedtime. So it’s nice to vary these every once in a while. You can also help your child to learn to read by holding the book open so you can both look at it and point to the words as you read.

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As children grow older and learn to read by themselves, you can still keep helping by discussing the reading matter with the child. Once again, you might think it’s too early to start having literary conversations, but the child will feel that you’re interested in what they’re doing. Children have active imaginations and growing intellects. They’re always trying to learn new things. If you observe a child closely throughout the day, you’ll see how much curiosity the child exhibits about every little thing.

Books are invaluable because they feed a child’s curiosity, giving information about all kinds of things, from the organs of our body to the history of Ancient Greece and Rome. Reading can help your children determine what they’re interested in and what they have a knack for. Sometimes, you’ll find that a child who hasn’t exhibited any interest whatsoever in a topic suddenly gets engrossed after finding a book that talks about it. After this, it’s just a matter of feeding that interest and watching it grow, rather like the process of watching a flower blossom!

Often, parents find it hard to keep up with a child’s questions because even adults don’t know all the answers. In such cases, it’s possible to get your child into a reading program that will help to develop reading comprehension and critical reasoning skills. A program of this kind will not only develop the child’s reading ability but will also get the child interested in books which will help in the long run. Whether your children are at an elementary, middle school or high school level, developing reading skills will benefit them immensely for the rest of their lives.

 

 

Comments

  1. Julie Wood says:

    One thing my mother instilled in me is the love of books! She took me to the library and read to me all the time when I was growing up! I believe it helped me all my life become very aware of so many things! Reading to kids is so important!

  2. Sarah L says:

    I still remember a book I read when I was young about a family in Peru. Someday I’ll travel there. Reading really opens up the world to you.

  3. Michelle F. says:

    Great post. I have been reading to my daughter since she was in my belly.

  4. ellen beck says:

    Reading to children is one of the best ways to get them started early to enjoy books and enjoy learning. Reading is also a great bonding time!

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