A capacity, and taste, for reading gives access to whatever has already been discovered by others. (Abraham Lincoln).


– Desiree Panlilio


Teens are very comfortable using social media from Youtube, Instagram and Tik Tok so much so that they do not contemplate reading books. Teens often associate reading with school,homework and it not really engaging or an activity they want to develop as a hobby. However, reading has a few impressive skills that indirectly teaches our teens.

Before the electronic era, no one had to be reminded why reading was important. Reading was the way to gain knowledge. From philosophers to astronomers, everyone relied heavily on reading books to gain and share their knowledge. But as time went by, people found entertainment in other things and reading became less in vogue. There are many benefits to reading, but I want to focus on just three.

The first is focus and concentration. It is estimated that we lose interest in something within eight seconds unless it is constantly changing and dynamic. Technology has made us “lazy”. However, hard tasks require focus and concentration. Concentration is the ability to focus without distraction on a cognitively demanding task. It is a skill that allows you to quickly master complicated information and not give up. Reading 30 minutes a day helps you to gain focus and concentration. You are focused on one task and your brain embraces that skill and builds up your ability to focus and concentrate. This is an important skill for a teen to exercise as the ability to focus and finish a task creates success academically.

The second is improved writing skills and vocabulary. If you read more, you will naturally improve your writing skills. When we read well-written books, we naturally observe its writing style, cadence, and composition. These writing techniques and styles will find their way into our own writing style. Since your vocabulary and pronunciation improve by reading regularly, it makes you a better writer. The more you read, the better your writing skills will become.
The last thing reading helps with is the development of empathy. Empathy is the ability to understand and share the emotions someone else is feeling. Reading and understanding the characters in a book builds our emotional intelligence and empathy. Reading can support and teach us values about social behavior, and the importance of understanding those who are different from ourselves. It allows us to gain knowledge of other worldviews and to help us grow, change and challenge our own perspective. All of this develops our emotional intelligence and empathy.
Our teens are in an active stage of growth and learning and reading is a great way to help them to develop their emotional intelligence.