As a student to become an elementary educator I have really come to realize how important reading is. When making lesson plans for my class I have always incorporated a book with it. I feel that the children can never learn too many words. As they get older knowing a vast vocabulary will help them throughout their lives.
In the center where I work we have some children in first grade. They love to read! I am always finding challenging books for them to begin reading. The schools are now giving an incentive to read for example the first graders were telling me how their school participates in reading counts. (A program where the children read books that are worth different points and take tests on these books) The school where they attend are taking some of the kids with the highest points for a special lunch at Max and Erma's where they will be allowed to get dessert with their lunch. I feel that this is a great incentive to keep these children reading and moving forward.
Reading is used in every subject for example in Music the different notes have meaning and in order to know and understand these meanings you must first be able to read the words. Reading is also used in Math for word problems and in Science for the different plants and animals. In social studies we talk about houses and the different types these all have separate names and meanings. Without reading and understanding the children will have a harder time in these other subjects and may end up falling behind in school.
Reading does not begin in elementary school. Instead it begins in the infant stage when parents and caregivers read to the children and point to the pictures and give them names.