Reading for Pleasure Impacts Students' Test Scores & More (New Research)

Reading for Pleasure Impacts Students' Test Scores & More (New Research)
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Reading for Pleasure Impacts Students' Test Scores & More (New Research)

You’ve heard it from us before. Master Books' whole child approach considers the mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual stages of development when providing education. An exciting new study from the University of Cambridge proves this holistic approach improves test scores and quality of life. 

Related Post: The Master Books Method of Education


We’ll share the facts and benefits of this study, how to make reading more fun for your child, and recommendations from the Moms of Master Books.

Benefits of Reading for Pleasure

According to a study from researchers at Cambridge, reading for fun early in life results in better test scores when children reach adolescence. 

Along with improved test scores, children who started reading for fun by the age of 9 were shown to have: 

  • Improved mental health
  • Less time spent on screens (computer, mobile devices)
  • Better sleep
  • Fewer signs of stress
  • Greater ability to focus their attention
  • Fewer problems with behavior issues like aggression and rule-breaking 

These benefits were accomplished by reading for fun just under two hours a day. Even more exciting, children who read the minimum amount gained the same benefits as those who read over 12 hours a week. 

How to Make Reading Fun 

Not only will reading boost your child’s development, but it can also be fun! Read some strategies to get your child more involved in reading for pleasure.


1. Create a cozy reading space. 

Designate an area in your home as a reading nook. Fill it with comfortable cushions, blankets, and soft lighting. Creating a cozy atmosphere makes reading feel like a special activity.


2. Lead by example.

Children often mimic the behavior of their parents. If they see you enjoying a good book, they are more likely to be curious about reading themselves. Share your excitement about books and discuss what you're reading with your child.

3. Allow freedom of choice.

Let your child choose their books based on interests and reading level. Whether it's fiction, non-fiction, comics, or graphic novels, allowing them to select what they want to read fosters a sense of ownership and autonomy. As your children’s interests change, expect their reading choices to change, too. Even better, your child’s reading interests can help foster formal learning lessons at home.

We’ve linked some excellent book recommendations below! 


4. Make reading interactive.

Engage your child by asking questions, discussing characters and plot twists, or even acting out scenes together. This serves as a way to make your child a more active reader and critical thinker!

5. Schedule reading time into the day or week.

Establish a consistent reading routine. Set aside a specific time each day dedicated to reading, whether it's before bedtime or during a quiet afternoon. Consistency helps form habits and reinforces reading as a regular and enjoyable part of life.


6. Connect books to real-life experiences.

Find books that relate to your child's interests or experiences. If they love animals, explore stories about wildlife adventures. If they love machines, find books about robots, construction vehicles, or trains. Then, make the books real and tangible. Visit the zoo. Go to the train station. Watch videos about your child’s favorite subject. Making the books real and practical moves their minds away from the theoretical and into the real world, further elevating their interest.


7. Celebrate milestones.

Acknowledge and celebrate your child's reading achievements, whether it's finishing a book, reaching a certain number of pages, or mastering a new reading level. Positive reinforcement can create a sense of accomplishment and motivation.

Use these strategies to make reading exciting and integral to your child's life, fostering a lifelong love for books and learning.


#ProBible Reading for Christian Homeschool Families

You can awaken the joy of reading in your children while significantly improving their ability to learn and live better. At Master Books, we offer over 700 #ProBible titles for every age. This allows you to build their biblical worldview while setting them up for educational success. 

We asked the homeschool moms in the Master Books app which books their children loved to read for pleasure so we could share their recommendations with you. 

Below is a list of the non-curriculum books they shared categorized by age. Several homeschool moms reported that their children read ahead in their curriculum books for pleasure because they like the subject so much!

Early Learners (3 to 6 years old) 

Early Elementary (6 to 9 years old)

Upper Elementary (9 to 12 years old)

Middle School (11 to 14 years old)

High School (14 to 18 years old)

New at

More Master Books Resources 

We welcome you to explore more #ProBible titles by easily searching by age range here.

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