Learning the Rewards of Reading

close up of the top of an open book pages

Reading expands the mind. Many people consider reading as one of the most satisfying pastimes.

Reading is primarily a mental activity. We read with our mind and use our imagination to paint the setting of the book, while recreating the joy and pain that the main characters experience as the story unfolds. We bring into play the different arguments and ideas brought up by the author.

To read effectively, reading helps you develop a wide vocabulary through extensive reading. A skillful reader has a wide recognition vocabulary. He or she may not know exactly what every word means, but will have a good general idea of the meaning of the sentence.

Reading makes you alert and curious about new words. Some readers develop the dictionary habit. Every time they come across a strange word, they try to figure out what it can possibly mean by the context. If they cannot do this, they refer to the dictionary.

Likewise, reading develops intellectual curiosity by exposing you to a variety of materials. You learn to read by reading books of increasing difficulty and variety. As in other forms of activity, you learn by actually doing.

Reading trains you to have an active and open mind. Merely grasping the writer’s idea is not enough. You must make a positive response to what you read.

Be an active, not passive, reader. Develop the habit of drawing your own conclusions, the habit of active thinking, of agreeing or disagreeing with the author.