“We find that books in the home have a positive payoff in improved test scores throughout the world,” writes a research team led by University of Nevada Reno sociologist Mariah Evans. “The relationship is strong, clear, and statistically significant in every one of the 42 nations (we studied).” Evans made this same point in a 2010 study, which found “home library size has a very substantial effect on educational attainment.”
Her new research confirms that conclusion using data from even a larger number of nations—42, rather than the 27 in the earlier report. It also rebuts critics who contend that having books in the home “merely signals children’s elite status to gatekeepers, who then grant them unjust advantages.”
Here are some simple activities to try with your preschooler (2-5): Look for letters everywhere. Ask your child to identify letters he or she sees on signs, in books, and on any kind of printed material.Read, read, read! Expose your child to as many types of books as possible. Flash Kids Alphabet Flashcards are a fun way to practice letter recognition. For example, put three letter cards on a table. Read one card aloud. Ask your child to point to the correct letter. Play rhyming games. Say a word and challenge your child to come up with a rhyming word...