So, is reading important? YES!!! I cannot imagine a world without words in it. Just imagine trying to drive. There would be no street signs or names on buildings to use as landmarks. There would be no menus in restaurants. There would be no songs to sing. What a boring world, it would be. For me, reading is like a gift that you get when it’s not even your birthday. It is a treasure chest just waiting for you to find and open.
I cannot envision what it would have been like growing up without books. Books were my ticket to so many different places. I could escape at any time and become whichever character was the most fascinating. I could do what they were doing and didn’t have to come “home” until I was ready to be myself again. Life was wonderful when you got lost between the pages of a book.
So, besides books being an escape from reality and developing our imagination, are there any other benefits? Of course there are! The Best Books for Kids website shares these benefits:
10 Benefits of Reading – the Top 10 Reasons Why Reading is Important and Why Children – and Adults! – Should Read Often
1. Those who read often and widely get better at it. Practice makes perfect!
2. Reading exercises our brain.
3. Reading improves concentration.
4. Reading teaches you about the world around you. It is the cheapest ticket around the world that you can buy!
5. Reading improves your vocabulary and leads to more highly developed language skills.
6. Reading develops your imagination.
7. Reading helps you develop empathy – you identify with what the characters are feeling.
8. Reading helps you do better at school and on your job.
9. Reading is a great form of entertainment.
10. Reading relaxes the body and calms the mind. In today’s world we all need something to help us to be still and quiet.
Why am I bringing all this up about the importance of reading? Well, May is “Get Caught Reading (GCR) Month.” This is a nationwide campaign to remind people of all ages how much fun it is to read. Launched in 1999 and supported by the Association of American Publishers, “Get Caught Reading” was founded by the former Congresswoman Pat Schroeder, President and Chief Executive Officer of AAP, the association representing book publishers.
I will admit that I don’t read books as much as I used to in grade school and I really miss that. I do have a few magazines that I enjoy reading for their tips and tricks, but that is not the same as taking that magic carpet ride out of Everyday, U.S.A. Even adults need that gentle reminder that it is okay to read something pleasurable. So, are you going to join the Library Staff and “Get Caught Reading?” See where we have been caught on our Pinterest – Get Caught Reading page.
So many ways to Get Caught Reading and win!
Let us know what you are currently reading and what benefit you are getting from it. Or better yet, for the month of May, send us a picture where you have been caught reading at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will add it to our Pinterest board.
We are also having a “Get Caught Reading” contest! Post an Instagram shot of your best “reading” selfie and tag us #bulibrary AND #getcaughtreading by May 30th! We will repost your shot to our Instagram account. The repost to our Instagram that gets the most like’s wins (prize to be determined)! If your Instagram account is private, send the photo to email@example.com so that we can add it to the Bellevue University Library on Instagram!