Lately, I have taken to collecting those catchy sayings and sentiments that often appear on Facebook declaring a similar love of books.
"I love walking into a bookstore. It's like all my friends are sitting on shelves, waving their pages at me." Tahareh Mafi
"Sometimes when I'm alone I like to sniff books." Source unknown
"Bookworms will rule the world - as soon as we finish one more chapter..." Harlequin.com
"Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counsellors, and the most patient of teachers." Charles William Eliot (My personal fave.)
I have a stack more! I don't know why I have started collecting these - they sing to me somehow, warm my heart and reassure me that there are others who share my love of the written word and my belief in the power of story.
When I was a Primary School Teacher, I always endeavoured not only to teach my students how to read, but also to guide them in taking their first steps on the path of becoming lifelong readers.
Research and experience have told us that reading has many benefits, that it is important. Reading improves vocabulary, concentration, focus and memory. It develops active mental processes, and helps children to become engaged learners. It stimulates the imagination and reduces stress. It provdes a wonderful escape.
But wait! There's more.
Most importantly, reading allows us to explore what it means to be human. It allows us to walk in someone else's shoes for a while, to view the world through someone else's eyes. To experience what it is like to be courageous or weak; shy or alone; to be persecuted, misjudged, misguided; to be bullied or shunned. It allows us to develop empathy and understand many different realities.
And in the words of CS Lewis: "We read to know we are not alone."
Three cheers for the National Year of Reading. I love2read!