By now you may have realised that today is World Book Day! Designated by UNESCO as a worldwide celebration of books and reading, World Book Day takes place in over 100 countries around the globe.
This is the one day in the calendar that we are encouraged to recognise the “magical power of books, – a link between the past and the future, a bridge between generations and across cultures”. For more information about this day of that we believe promotes mental wellness, check out World Book Day at www.unesco.org.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) states that mental wellness is defined as “a state of well-being in which the individual realises his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to his or her community.” Here are 3 ways we believe reading can nurture your child’s mental wellness:
- Being in the moment – When we read with our children, we share moments of imagination leading us out of this world to a place of limitless possibilities. Reading allows us to carve out a special time where togetherness is uninterrupted and free flowing. In a fast paced environment with digital technology in the hands of many, a book in family hands can help to unwind, switch off and be present in the moment.
- Reducing symptoms of depression – According to the ‘Children & Young People’s Mental Health in the Digital Age’ report (OECD, 2018) mental health problems represent the largest burden of disease among young people. Recent guidelines (NICE, 2019) suggest that children could soon access digital cognitive behavioural therapy via smartphones. With access to books and the choice to reclaim your time, opening a book with your child may bring the natural therapeutic benefits they might need.
- Inspiring young writers – Reading books written by other young authors can inspire a desire for children to do the same. Building self-esteem, confidence and aspirations in children of African Caribbean backgrounds is particularly important. Given the prevalence of obesity, disproportionate exclusion rates and low attainment amongst our young people the narrative of children in this time is of great importance. For if we can begin to see the world through the eyes of our children, we might just learn something new that that feels like a rebirth and sounds like shooting stars navigating a way through life.
So there you have it, 3 quick thoughts to keep in mind the next time you pass your local book shop, street book sellers or find yourself browsing on-line for that next gift. Check out three of our favourite book sellers listed below!
Black Child Promotions
236 Oxford St, Marylebone, London W1C 1DE (West London)
441-443 Brixton Rd, Brixton, London SW9 8HE (South London)
My Book Basket
Market Village. One Stop Shopping Centre, Walsall Road. Birmingham. B42 1SF
New Beacon Books
76 Stroud Green Road, London, England, N4 3EN, United Kingdom