Reading books gets crossed off of many students’ lists as they enter high school. Minju Kim, a senior at the Academy of the Canyons, states, “I only read two books this year: one from school and one on my own”. Although students may be busy with their packed schedules, they should find time to read for pleasure, finding a book they would love to read, whether it is fictional or nonfictional.
Besides reading for school, reading for pleasure has many advantages for students. Erica Javier, a sophomore at Quartz Hill High School, states, “Reading has helped me to become a better writer, understand words more clearly and retain more information.” Reading can increase students’ areas in various subjects, especially in English and textual analysis. On May 23, 2018, Thomas Oppong, from Medium, an online news platform, stated: “According to the ongoing research at Haskins Laboratories for the Science of the Spoken and Written Word, reading, unlike watching or listening to media, gives the brain more time to stop, think, process, and imagine the narrative in front of us.” Books can improve the brain function and concentration as well as help increase peoples’ knowledge in vocabulary and grammar.
No matter what the future holds for students, they will have to know how to read to move towards the next step in life. Many students will take the SAT or ACT in high school for their college applications, but both exams consist of a reading and grammar section. In order to understand college-level passages, students should be able to understand a high level of vocabulary and understand complex sentences; all these aspects come from the basics of reading, which can be improved by casual reading for pleasure.
If students read 20 minutes each day, they can end up reading over a million words in a year. Although students may think that they do not have any time for reading, they have twenty-four hours in a day, and 20 minutes is a small part of that. Students can wake up early, stay up late, or find time during the day to read. Little by little, students can improve their academic skills.
Holly Bae, Grade 10
La Cañada High School