Reading for pleasure ‘boosts pupils’ results in maths’

A research announcement from the Institute of Education:

Dr Alice Sullivan and Matt Brown […] analysed the reading behaviour of approximately 6,000 young people being followed by the 1970 British Cohort Study.

[…]  reading for pleasure was found to be more important for children’s cognitive development between ages 10 and 16 than their parents’ level of education.

Dr Sullivan notes that reading for pleasure had the strongest effect on children’s vocabulary development, but the impact on spelling and maths was still significant. “It may seem surprising that reading for pleasure would help to improve children’s maths scores,” she said. “But it is likely that strong reading ability will enable children to absorb and understand new information and affect their attainment in all subjects.” […]

‘Social inequalities in cognitive scores at age 16: The role of reading’, by Alice Sullivan and Matt Brown, is the latest paper to be published in the CLS Working Paper Series.

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