DR MICHAEL SLATTERY: The importance of reading

In the age of computer gaming, reading remains an essential and fundamental skill for all young people.

Literacy provides students with the capacity to realise their place in the world and empowers them to the essential and fundamental skills to access learning and to engage in meaningful ways to the local and global communities. 
Of late we have seen some sensationalised reporting on reading and debate over teaching techniques which has left some parents confused about the best way to support their child with reading. Parents can best do this by reading to them, reading with them, and listening to them reading.
These three approaches assist considerably and the longer parents spend with their children reading the better. Ultimately it helps boost literacy development. Also talking about books when they complete their reading is a positive way to assist with their comprehension levels, especially when parents ask about the main characters, meaning of the title, theme, messages, likes and dislikes and the overall impression they had of the book.
This is particularly helpful with established readers and supports knowledge about different authors, cultural norms and cultural literacy. Also encourage reading to establish library habits and take an interest in their choices and encourage them to be adventurous.
Dr Michael Slattery Image
Dr Michael Slattery

Dr Michael Slattery is the Director of Catholic Schools, Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle.