Sunday, May 23, 2010

How many books at home?

For those who are concerned about their child's potential to go to university, a study (sent to me via Mum) has found that the more books you have available at home, the higher your child's education attainment.

So if your child gets a degree it's not about how well educated you are, it's about how many books you have.

How many books do you need to have to make sure your child gets to go further at school?

The study found that having 500 books made a big difference, but
"Having as few as 20 books in the home still has a significant impact on propelling a child to a higher level of education, and the more books add, the greater the benefit."

The quote below interested me most:

"This book benefit was seen across countries, and held regardless of the parent's educational background, the country's Gross Domestic Product, father's occupation or the political system of the country, the researchers say."

Regardless of parent's educational background, eh? This is most interesting for homeschooling parents.

It puts paid to the idea that only institutionally educated people are qualified to homeschool. Any parent, no matter what their education level should be qualified for homeschooling if they themselves have a love of learning and their child's best interests at heart.

Often when I tell friends that I intend to homeschool, their reaction is "Oh, but you can do it because you're a teacher anyway". In fact, don't teachers make the worst homeschoolers?

In America especially, some states make it compulsory for homeschoolers to have teaching qualifications (if they haven't banned homeschooling outright).

Instead, perhaps it should be compulsory for all parents to have more than 20 books in their shelves.


Leonie said...

Or instead of the push for a computer for each child, perhaps we can push for 20 books for each child??? :-)

Sarah said...

Hi Leonie, sounds like a plan! I wonder if the study measured the use of the books, or whether they were simply present in the home.
I'm always struck by how few books many friends my age have in their homes. I wonder if school put them off? Or computers, the net and computer games?