Want Kids to Succeed at School? Stock Your Home with Books

In Children's by Dennis Abrams

By Dennis Abrams

kb library netherlandsAt Core 77, Rain Noe looked at a large-scale international study by a team of researchers from Stanford and the University of Munich, who examined factors involving economics, school conditions and parents to see how they affect education. And according to Noe, one of the most interesting factoids “concerned the fact that a child’s achievements at school are correlated to whether his or her parents own a very simple object.”

What is that object? A bookshelf. Two bookshelves, actually. According to the study’s authors, “the educational achievements of British children whose parents owned two bookcases differed from children whose parents didn’t by 1.5 standard deviations. This equates to three times the amount of what the average kid learns during a year of school.”

“Books at home are the single most important predictor of student performance in most countries,” wrote the study’s authors. And the reason seems to be fairly simple: all other factors aside, it is the influence of “bookish” or well-read literate parents that make all the difference in a child’s education.

Read the entire report here (PDF download).

About the Author

Dennis Abrams

Dennis Abrams is a contributing editor for Publishing Perspectives, responsible for news, children’s publishing and media. He’s also a restaurant critic, literary blogger, and the author of “The Play’s The Thing,” a complete YA guide to the plays of William Shakespeare published by Pentian, as well as more than 30 YA biographies and histories for Chelsea House publishers.