Thank you for being a faithful Vessel Project reader. My name is Eddie Jones and I write middle grade mysteries for boys (girls like the books, too) because I believe reading improves the creativity of young minds.
Recent studies have shown the biggest predictor of academic success is not race, income, gender, parents’ education, or location, but the presence of books in the home. And yet literacy rates are plummeting among young male readers. According to begintoread.com:
- One child in four grows up not knowing how to read.
- 3 out of 4 food stamp recipients perform in the lowest 2 literacy levels.
- 90% of welfare recipients are high school dropouts.
- 14% of Americans are considered functionally illiterate, meaning they cannot read well enough to function productively in a school or work environment.
- 29% of Americans are low-level, functionally literate. They read only enough to do their job and get through the day.
- 44% of Americans are highly functionally literate but prefer to receive information orally.
- Over 60% of adults in the US prison system read at or below the fourth grade level
- 85% of US juvenile inmates are functionally illiterate
Reading Changes Gray Matter
Books are at the heart of language acquisition for children, and language acquisition is the major factor in determining long-term academic and business success. Simply put: reading stimulates creativity. Books trigger words, and children need to hear lots and lots of words to develop their brains. Just fifteen minutes of reading every day exposes a child to a million words a year.
Reading Accelerates Learning
Children who are not regular readers are, on average, three years behind children in homes with lots of books. Children from professional families where reading is encouraged start kindergarten having heard 45 million words. Children from families on welfare and in environments with limited access to books enter kindergarten having heard just 13 million words.
The Benefits of Reading:
- Introduces children to imaginary worlds
- Inspires children to dream and expand their horizons
- Teaches conversational dialogue
- Stimulates problem solving
- Adds knowledge
- Introduces tough topics in safe environments
- Improves vocabulary
- Ignites ideas
If we can get one boy to read one book or help one young man learn to think creatively, we are well on our way to changing a life.
Many of my books have been included in the Vessel Project posts and I hope you’ve enjoyed them. If you’d like to learn more about me or my tween / teen novels, please visit my website at EddieJones.org or find me on Facebook or Twitter.
Thank you again for supporting The Vessel Project and the Christian book market by purchasing all the great books posted here.
Readers Are Leaders, Buy a Boy a Book
Author, Speaker, Publisher
Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas