Research shows that there is a strong correlation between time spent reading and test scores. The reality is that some students do not have academic support at home. Thus, it is important to encourage students to read outside of their school day. Below are three ways you, as a volunteer, can help.

#1 –  Encourage students to read at home and follow up by asking what they’ve read.

You are a consistent voice in their lives. Your encouragement and follow-up can lead to action.

#2 – Emphasize the library as their best resource.

School libraries are the tool for overcoming the barrier of not having books in the home. School libraries also provide a wide variety of books that allow students to choose what that they enjoy reading,along with giving them access to grade level books. A student may have to read about weather patterns during in class reading, but might be more interested in reading their favorite superhero or animal book. The best part about this resource is that it’s free!

#3 – Share why you enjoy reading.

Sharing why you enjoy reading can be something that you mention each time you meet with students. Often students will get excited about something when they see someone they look up to showing enthusiasm for it as well.Excitement is contagious! You can also emphasize that you enjoy reading together with them. This enthusiasm can create positive experiences around reading which can lead to inspire the student toreading independently.

Reading is necessary for success- in academics and in life. These simple strategies for encouraging reading in the next generation may seem small, but the potential impact in changing transforming a lifeis a game changer. This was made evident when our city  was approached by the local Church to understandhow they could best serve thecity — and the request was tohelp with literacy!

This is why Education Connection exists, to be the answer tothe literacy gap in the Greater Austin area. In doing so, it is influencing future behavioral problems and dropout rates. The ability to read at or above grade level is connected to thriving in adulthood.

Let’s continue to change the world, one book at a time!

Image Source: Ed Surge