Reading and its Effects on Development Essay

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Reading and its Effects on Development

Over the years the attention focused on children from birth to three years has increased dramatically. Actually, it was in the 1970’s that researchers began to believe that reading to infants would help to stimulate their growth and development. Up to the decade of the 1970’s many people believed that infants lacked any intellectual abilities. Some people also believed that an infant’s hearing and vision were not operative in the first few months of life. But, over the years studies have proven otherwise. The first three years of life have been proven to be the most critical years in a child’s development. One area looked at by researchers and teachers are is how reading to infants and
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Children raised in environmentally deprived facilities experience fewer sounds, colors, pictures, interactions, and sights. Their brains are smaller than those of children who grow up in sensually rich environments with meaningful relationships (Porter, 2003).

Sounds, pictures, interactions, and sights can all be gained from a book. Having someone sit down and read with a child can allow him or her to experience these stimulants to the senses. Also, reading to a child helps the brain to recognize the spoken word with the written word. The brain’s plasticity also means that there are times when negative experiences or the absence of appropriate stimulation are more likely to have serious and sustained effects (Early Childhood, 2002). Appropriate stimulation would include interacting with the child either by talking to him, or by touching him. Reading is one way to talk to a child and to allow him to be stimulated by the human voice, the words, the pictures in the book, and the colors in the book.

Language skills are also developed by reading books. Once the brain has recognized the words as familiar and recognizes the sounds, the child can then learn to say them. The development of language and literacy skills begins at birth (Porter, 2003). As the child gets older, reading with him can also help him to form sentences (Maxcey, 1998). Children can recognize when a new sentence has begun when they are being read to. This helps a child to

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