Importance of books: a news report and results of a study

In the past week I have read two articles that examine the role of books in the home. Here is a brief summary of these and links to them for you to read in detail.

In Children More Likely to Own a Mobile Phone than a Book, the editor reports on a study in the UK that shows many students in the age group seven to sixteen are more likely to own a mobile (cellular phone) than a book. This raises concerns about lower literacy levels and the impact of technology on young people.

Read more of this article here.

What the survey shows more than anything else is that:

  • Parents are more willing to spend money on phones rather than on books which is very sad when you think about it. 
  • Children and teenagers are spending more time talking and texting (with improper spelling and grammar) than they are reading which leads to them to grow up less creative, less reflective and ultimately less informed.


In Books in Home as Important as Parents’ Education in Determining Children’s Education Level, the results of a 20-year study, which includes several countries, are looked at. It shows that it is not only the educational level of parents but also the availability of books in the home that influences how far a child advances in his/her education.

Read more of this article here.

What is important then is to:

  • Create a print-rich home environment: Surround children with print in all its forms (not just books, but magazines, posters, comics, newspapers etc.)
  • Talk about the printed word: Read cereal boxes, road signs, billboards, menus etc. together with your child. Let them see, hear and read print wherever they go and in whatever they do.

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