We know reading is good for you, good for kids, good for teens, good for everyone.
We know about Catharsis.
We know about Empathy.
And now, maybe we need to add Social Skills as a benefit of reading as well.
A new study published in the journal Science was discussed in the recent New York Times article by Pam Belluck, For Better Social Skills, Scientists Recommend a Little Chekhov
"It found that after reading literary fiction, as opposed to popular fiction or serious nonfiction, people performed better on tests measuring empathy, social perception and emotional intelligence — skills that come in especially handy when you are trying to read someone’s body language or gauge what they might be thinking."The parsing out of what kinds of books were beneficial to read and the guesses as to why ranged from interesting to, well, elitist.
Are the findings ammunition for teachers who want to teach "literary fiction?"
Does it hurt those of us who write everything else?
How does this fit in with the new Common Core?
And does this even apply to children and teens, and to kids' and teen books?
There are so many questions this study brings up.
Emanuele Castano and David Comer Kidd, researchers in the New School for Social Research’s psychology department, are continuing to research the connection between reading and emotional intelligence. They're even asking for volunteers here.
Illustrate and Write On,