Four Top Benefits of Strong Reading Skills – Episode Five

I love reading. I always have. My mother taught me how to read when I was very young, and although I struggled academically for many years during my educational journey, as chronicled in my book, “The Little Flower Vignettes – Story Behind The Story,” the ability to read was never my problem. However, the ability to prepare for test based on comprehending subject matter, led to anxiety and poor test taking skills, low self-esteem and no confidence in my ability to understand complex issues.Fortunately, I was able to identify, address and overcome my comprehension issues, which led me to confidently pursue advanced academic degrees.

Four benefits of strong reading skills are:

1. Boosts Comprehension and Memorization

Comprehension and memorization is a key skill needed to ace exams. A pupil cannot interpret what he or she doesn’t understand; neither can he remember what he or she hasn’t read. Strong reading skills promote comprehension and memorization and the ability to identify a connection with other stories.

Statistics from the Bureau of Labour Statistics found that students who struggle with reading in the first few years of elementary school comprises percent of those who do not receive a diploma.

2. Improved Awareness The stronger a child’s reading skills, the more curious they are. Strong readers are not selective in what they read. They read any and everything-from billboards and road signs to newspapers and academic resources well beyond their grade level.

3. Increased Fluency It is often said that practice makes perfect and the more a child reads, the better he or she becomes at it. Reading aloud is important in the acquisition of this skill. Reading aloud builds a child’s confidence and fluency, which is vastly improved if they receive encouragement from adults.

4. Builds the Vocabulary Since stronger readers read more, they are highly likely to come across a variety of new words which builds their vocabulary. New and interesting words pique their curiosity prodding them to ask questions or run to the dictionary or computer to find answers to their questions. Overtime, an increased vocabulary coupled with memory skills, strengthen overall literacy.

A society is only as strong as its weakest members and if we want to strengthen the fabric of our communities we have to start from the ground up by ensuring that our youth have a solid reading foundation. How can we do this? By becoming engaged in the literacy delivery process on a formal and informal basis.

Do the civic and social organizations of which you are affiliated have or support a youth literacy outreach initiative?

Will you make a commitment to play a part in strengthening the moral and economic fabric of your community?

We all can make a positive contribution to the future of our society.

If you would like to learn more about ways that you can get involve in literacy outreach, join the conversation on the Little Flower Literacy and Economics Radio Show each Thursday morning at 10:30 AM CST, at www.littleflowerartist.com.

The show highlights the connection between illiteracy, economics and communities, and offers solutions to securing funding for community development initiatives that address the youth illiteracy problem.

How Excellent Readers Strengthen Their Communities – Episode Four

If you are reading this post you are among the 86% of Americans who are functionally literate. In an earlier post, we explored how poor readers weakened their communities. To get a better idea of the problem, let’s explore how excellent readers build strong communities.

From 2010 to 2014, Washington topped the “Most Literate City Study” conducted by Central Connecticut State University. During the 1990s, prior to being named as the most literate city, Washington was once the murder capital of the United States. The study revealed that although murders peaked at 479 in 1991, by 2012, the city’s murder rate was reduced to 88. It appears that as the city’s population became more literate, the murder rate reduced.

Aside from the reduced crime rate, the city’s GDP increased dramatically over the years. Between 2009 and 2012, Washington was listed in the Top 10 Metro Areas recording a GDP growth of 11.4%. Please note that this growth occurred during the years when the city’s literacy rate improved. These and other statistics lead me to conclude that excellent readers actually do have a dynamic impact on their communities.

There are other benefits to a literate community that statistics may or may not have measured. For instance, excellent readers are often confident people and confident people pursue their goals, dreams and ambitions. Additionally, strong readers have been shown to be more engaged citizens, and the stronger the citizens, the better communities respond to society’s changing needs.

We can agree that we want our community’s youth to become excellent readers. However, excellence doesn’t happen overnight. If we are serious about boosting reading skills, we must be good role models and provide year-round access to books. Additionally, we must find ways to increase their motivation to read.

A society is only as strong as its weakest members and if we want to strengthen the fabric of our communities we have to start from the ground up by ensuring that our youth have a solid reading foundation. How can we do this? By becoming engaged in the literacy delivery process on a formal and informal basis.

Do the civic and social organizations of which you are affiliated have or support a youth literacy outreach initiative?

The RRR Approach’s Impact on Illiteracy – Episode Three

Have you ever tried to fit a square peg in a round hole? It doesn’t quite fit, right? Well, that’s the same thing the RRR approach has been trying to do for decades. The brainchild of Sir William Curtis, RRR (Reading, Riting and Rithmetic) were fundamentals of public school learning in the 19th century. This system was based on producing a monolific blueprint for education, whereby every child received the exact same information and education to be tested using standardized means.

Growing up in the 1960s, I was subject to this type of teaching method and while I made acceptable grades according to my parents’ standards, I did not grasp the subject matter in a manner that would allow me to excel in college, nor did I have confidence in my ability to learn. As highlighted in my book, “The Little Flower Vignettes – Story Behind The Story, one cap doesn’t always fit all. Everyone has unique talents and abilities, and the RRR approach, along with a second grade teacher who voiced that I, the only black student in her class, was too smart to be in the second grade, stifled my creative talents, and shut down my mind for a very long time.

A completely different example involved Sir Thomas Edison. His teacher told him he was too stupid to learn. Born in the 1840’s, Edison too was exposed to the RRR approach which couldn’t identify his unique skills and was therefore classified as stupid. As you may already know, Edison went on to become one of the greatest inventors/geniuses in history credited with the electric light bulb in 1879, the phonograph and the motion picture camera. As a sidebar, I must add that in 1800, Italian inventor Alessandro Volta developed the first practical method of generating electricity, the voltaic pile.

All of our educational experiences are different, and while all children are unique, some are blessed with talents that cannot be unearthed if educators rigidly adhere to the archaic RRR method. Remembering my very difficult educational journey, I believe that instead of focusing entirely on the fundamentals of literacy, other aids can be effective in helping children to develop literacy and critical-thinking skills. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this.

A society is only as strong as its weakest members and if we want to strengthen the fabric of our communities we have to start from the ground up by ensuring that our youth have a solid reading foundation. How can we do this? By becoming engaged in the literacy delivery process on a formal and informal basis. Do the civic and social organizations of which you are affiliated have or support a youth literacy outreach initiative? Will you make a commitment to play a part in strengthening the moral and economic fabric of your community? We all can make a positive contribution to the future of our society. If you would like to learn more about ways that you can get involve in literacy outreach, join the conversation on the Little Flower Literacy and Economics Radio Show each Thursdays morning at 10:30 AM EST, at www.littleflowerartist.com. The show highlights the connection between illiteracy, economics and communities, and offers solutions to securing funding for community development initiatives to address the youth illiteracy problem.

Inspired by Ty Montgomery

God at Work from Pastor James MacDonald via Bible App

Thanks to my inspiring godson Ty Montgomery, I just started this new 7-day Bible Study today through Bible App.

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Ty-Montgomery/1476210529299025

Please download the app, and friend me, so that we can study together. https://www.bible.com/users/floritabible,
and you can friend Ty also on Bible App at: https://www.bible.com/users/tymontgomery2
As I go through this study I will share the devotional commentary with you:-)

Here’s today’s…

Trust the Lord in Everything

On most days, if you spend time with me, at some point you will hear me say, “I trust the Lord in everything.” I’m reminding myself that part of loving God with all my heart, soul, mind, and strength gets down to the very practical matter of trusting Him constantly, continuously, and consciously. Like, every day, all day. I’m practicing the discipline required to not lean on my own understanding and to actively acknowledge the Lord in all my ways.

Now, the opening phrase of Proverbs 3:5 is “Trust in the LORD.” The most important word in that phrase is not trust (even though it’s the verb). The crucial, weighty word in both those phrases is LORD. You see, if I’m trying to have a robust and powerful trust in a tiny, pretty much unable and weak God who needs to be pumped up by my trust, I’ve got nothing. But even if the best I can muster up is a mustard seed of trust and faith in the awesome (the only truly correct use for this adjective) God of the universe, then I’ve got something going on!

Trusting the Lord isn’t hard as long as you are scoped into the Lord you trust. When the concern shifts to trying to measure the power, strength, or endurance of your trust itself, you’re already in trouble. But when your attention is daily turned to Him, seeking to know Him better and better, eager to worship Him and be with others who want to worship Him, trusting becomes part of the response.

Where Little Flower Got Her Power – Reader Response Journal


Where Little Flower Got Her Power – Reader Response Journal

For children ages 8-13 Reader Response Journal 1 of 3 The Where Little Flower Got Her Power Reader Response Journal provides a repository for the collection of thoughts and perspectives of the reader of Where Little Flower Got Her Power – A Little Flower Novelette. Where Little Flower Got Her Power – A Little Flower Novelette is part of the Children of The World Story Book and Educational Series. The series is part of Florita Bell Griffin’s Little Flower International Cultural Art Project.

Book 1 Reader Response Cover