What is big, easy reading? First, you read lots of books and stories. That’s the big part. And these texts need to be right at your level. That’s the easy part. There are many different ways to talk about big, easy reading. Some people call it a “book flood.” Others call it the book-based approach. I call it big, easy reading, or big reading for short.
The good news is that big reading really works. Here are 5 reasons why big reading is for good you.
First. Big reading is enjoyable! People often believe that language study is hard and boring. They do drills. They memorize lists of words. They study complex grammar rules. Then they get tired and lose their desire to study. But big reading is fun. What would you rather do? Do hard and boring study or read many enjoyable stories.
Second. Big reading works! A student says, “I want to improve my English, not read stories.” Well, here’s more good news. Big reading helps you learn grammar and vocabulary. We know this from research. And big reading brings results. We’ve seen big readers improve TOEIC test scores .73 points per hour of reading.
Third. Big reading is a good use of your time! One student said to me, “I like stories, but I want to improve my English quickly.” Yes, it takes time to improve language ability. But big readers can improve faster. In some cases, we have seen big readers improve three times faster than other learners.
Fourth. Big reading helps you get a feel for English. If you study rules, maybe you can remember them if you have time to think. But big readers get a feel for English. If you study rules, maybe you will know about English. But if you become a big reader, then you will know English. Big readers get a deep and automatic feel for English words and rules.
Fifth. Big reading can beat study abroad. People who spend a long time in an English speaking country tend to become good at English. But big reading can equal or even beat study abroad. For example, Ken read about 45 minutes per day in one year (about 3,000,000 words). And Megumi studied English for one year in Canada. Ken improved just as much as Megumi. And if Ken read, 6,000,000 words, he would improve more than Megumi!
All these facts come from research. Remember, big reading is enjoyable. It really works. It’s a good use of your time. It helps you get a feel for English, and it can even beat study abroad. If you want to improve your English, then start reading lots of easy books and stories today! And sign up for ReadOasis.com. It’s the best site on the Net for big, easy reading.
Click here to read Five More Facts About the Power of Reading!