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Preschool education improves alphabet letter recognition, study finds

Medical X-Press – Staff Writer

“Many education experts believe children’s preschool years are important to their educational development and preparation for success in school. Although the benefits of attending preschool may seem apparent, limited evidence exists to support this based on large scale state-wide studies. Now, a new study from the University of Missouri College of Education has found that, on average, children who completed preschool make large improvements in their alphabet recognition skills compared to children have just begun preschool. The researcher says the results of the study help show the effectiveness of preschool in preparing children to succeed throughout their academic careers and may prevent future academic failure.”(more)

How to bond with your child through reading

The Telegraph – Professor Peter Fonagy

“For anyone in the vastly busy day-to-day, having some time to read together perhaps at the end of the day can create a space for the kind of meeting of minds between parent and child which is developmentally so helpful to children. We take being able to focus for granted. Yet small children need to learn this skill, and they learn best when ‘trained’ by someone they care about. Reading for pleasure with children (going through a book together, talking about it, looking at the pictures) now has solid research evidence showing that it can improve language development and capacity for paying attention and also social and emotional outcomes.”(more)

Promoting Health Literacy for Children and Adolescents

AAP News and Journal – Tyler N.A. Winkelman, Martina T. Caldwell, Brandon Bertram, Matthew M. Davis

“Only 12% of American adults have proficient health literacy, defined as a set of skills needed to effectively function in the health care system.1 This is troubling given that health literacy is a stronger predictor of health than age, income, employment status, educational level, or race.2 A growing body of research also shows that low health literacy is associated with worse child health outcomes,3 higher health care costs, and elevated mortality rates.”(more)

How to get your boy reading

The Guardian – Susan Elkin

“A recent study has shown what every teacher and parent knew: most boys read less enthusiastically and thoroughly than girls. Sue Palmer, in her book 21st Century Boys attributes this to brain development. Testosterone accelerates right brain growth and makes boys more interested in overview, movement and space for longer. The effects have now been confirmed in two big studies led by Keith Topping, professor of education and social research at the University of Dundee.”(more)

How to Help Students Develop a Love of Reading

KQED News Mind/Shift – Holly Korbey

“Schools have traditionally taught children how to read, and have always tried to encourage reading. But with an understanding that greater literacy is needed for the 21st Century workforce as well as higher benchmarks to meet, schools like Andrew’s are coming up with programming that not only supports the nuts-and-bolts of learning how to read, but tries to hook kids as well: giving kids free time during the school day to read what they wish, holding all-family “literacy nights” to give away books, reading contests with prizes, and more. Parents often want to do the same at home. Some may feel like Baumert, a veterinarian at an emergency clinic, who said that between work, kids and extra-curricular activities, she’s often too tired to fight the reading battle. She knows that loving reading has a host of benefits for her son; she is just not sure where to draw the line.”(more)

Children’s Halloween books that are a real treat

The Northwest Herald – Mia Geiger

“For many kids, dressing up as their favorite pirate or princess and collecting candy sounds like perfection. Some, though, are intimidated by the whole thing. Who can blame them? Big monsters are parading up and down the street where they live; they’re even knocking on their door! For those kids, a gentle story about the silly side of Halloween can help them feel more comfortable. And for those who have had their costume picked out for weeks, these books can make the day more fun.”(more)