Monday, September 26, 2011

The Scientific Proof

Scientists conducted a 20 year study in 27 countries, which is pretty darn huge! Massive, even. The study and its results make me happy.

The study found that the number of books in a family's home has a greater determining factor on how much education a child will get than anything else.


Before this study, scientists believed the education level of the parents was the greatest determining factor. But get this: having books in the home is twice as important as the father’s education level.

It's more important than what country the child was born in.
It's more important than the father's occupation.
It's more important than the country's political system. Or its gross domestic product.

The study found that, “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 you add, the greater the benefit.”

And having a 500 book library in your home versus having no books is the same as the parents having a university education versus having a 2nd grade education. Can you even believe that?

So what does it mean? Well, lots of things, but two that are pretty great.

First, if you have kids, ever plan to have kids, or are a kid yourself, you have a great excuse to go buy more books!

And you can tell parents (either now if you already have a book published, or later if you don't yet), "Buy my book and your kid will go to college!"



J. A. Bennett said...

That is awesome! I guess I know what I'm getting my kids for Christmas :)
BTW, you won the critique on my blog. Congrats!

Cristina said...

this just made my day.. now I don't have to feel bad for the stacks of books on my living room floor because we have run out of room in our shelves.. yay!

Kelley said...

That's crazy! I'm glad I'm stocking up ahead of time then :)

elizabethreinhardt said...

WOW!! I had a feeling Amelia would grow up to have more than one PhD! Woot! And Cristina, I just called my husband to tell him about this so he will stop crying about the books scattered all over our house. He's Team Massive Amounts of Books now!

Oh, and congrats on your critique win on JA's blog, Peggy!

Tara Tyler said...

what about the books we donate? i dont have room for all our books!
thanks for sharing the good news =)

E.R. King said...

We have book shelves full of children's books, and we go to the library every week for more. We never leave with less than 15. I'm so glad my children love books.
Great post!

prerna pickett said...

Awesome! Thanks for sharing. I guess I'm not as stupid as I thought since I have well over a hundred books to my name.

Kristine said...

I lost count. Needless to say, I think my kids will be okay. Which leads me to thanking you for all the books you've given them!

linda said...

Ooh, thanks for the great excuse to buy more books! :D (Who cares that I don't even have kids yet? It's good to be prepared!)

Abby said...

LOL! I love the excuses! This is great and totally awesome too! I think I will use these excuses with my husband so there is evidence that I need to buy MORE books!

Iain said...

I feel a strong urge to go and count the books in the house. I may be gone some time...

WilyBCool said...

Love it! Friends @ Tooele Writers recommended you. Glad they did!

Joanne said...

How wonderful is this? I think books just open so many doors to children, to imagination and story and the desire to know and see more!

Patti said...

This is great news and a great excuse to buy more books.

Nancy Thompson said...

I always had a big library and read to my son when he was young. He learned to read when he turned 3. And now he's in college at the age of 16. He doesn't like to read much any more (probably cuz he HAS to all the time), but he's hella smart! And I'm a proud mama!!

M Pax said...

Fascinating study. I love books. Whether on my nook or that growing pile in the corner. My mom took us to the library every week as kids, too.

Nas Dean said...

Fascinating and something definitely to think about. I also donate books to my local library, so the excuse to buy more is welcome!

Carrie Butler said...

Hah! When the time comes to peddle my books, I'm going to yell, "Think of the CHILDREN!" :) Great post, Pegasus!

Lan said...

Finally some useful research!! Although I've always suspected as much. I wonder why this is so? Possibly because kids are curious and even if they don't like to read, no child could go past looking inside a book with a great cover. At least now I have justification for why my coffee table seems to be giving birth to books :)

Elizabeth To’oā MacDonald said...

Excellent. Even with the growing popularity of e-books, I believe that stacking up on print copies (especially reference books) would have a more favourable result than having 3000+ books on your Kindle, laptop or other reader.

Alleged Author said...

Soooo true! My mom had a collection of over 1,100 books by the time I was 5 (so she claims). Has to be true though because her library now encases over 5,000. Only hardcover. Took over the guest room and her entire living room (floor to ceiling shelves). So glad she doesn't make me dust them anymore!

John Waverly said...

Fun facts.

They reminded me of a quote: "I would be most content if my children grew up to be the kind of people who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves." - Anna Quindlen

Peggy Eddleman said...

J.A.-- I'm so excited I won! Yay! Thank you!

Cristina-- Haha! It's always great to find a reason not to feel bad- especially about books!

Kelley-- Sounds like a VERY fun plan.

Elizabeth-- It's always feels SO GOOD to recruit people to be on Team Massive Amounts of Books- especially when you get your husband on board! And thanks about the critique- I'm excited!

Tara-- I'm going to very unscientifically say that donated books undoubtedly count toward your total. :)

E.R.-- You're raising a bunch of college graduates for sure!

Prerna-- Of course you're not! And yay books!

Kristine-- Yep. I think you won't have to worry about them not going to college!

Linda-- You're welcome! It's always good to be prepared, especially when it involves buying books. :)

Abby-- It's all about the evidence. Well, evidence and excuses.

Iain-- I felt the strong urge when I read the study, too! If you do end up counting, come back and tell us the total!

Wily-- Awww! That's so sweet! I'm glad they did, too.

Joanne-- I think you are totally and completely right!

Patti-- Isn't it just?

Nancy-- That's INCREDIBLE!! Congrats! I'd be proud, too. (And btw- you look no where near old enough to have a sixteen year old!)

M-- Library books make a huge difference! They can give all the benefits of having a houseful of books, without having to have all the bookshelves!

Nas-- All of you library book donors are awesome! Glad I could give you another excuse. :)

Carrie Ann-- I want to be there when that day comes. (I'm picturing you standing on the signing table crying out, just so you know.)

Lan-- Ha! A coffee table giving birth to books! Love it.

Elizabeth-- I totally agree. Of course, I say that not having an e-reader. My opinion could change when that day comes. Or maybe not. There is nothing like a kid being surrounded in tangible books!

Alleged-- That is AMAZING! Wow! I'd be glad not to have to dust those, too. And I'd be glad to be shut in a room at her house, too!

John-- Hahaha! That's the best quote EVER.

Kaylee Baldwin said...

Yay! Now I have another (valid) reason for buying books. I totally believe this. We had a ton of books in our house growing up and reading was always a huge deal. As adults, my sisters and I all love to read still.

Marcy said...

I love finding so many kindred spirits here and validation for our family's overflowing bookshelves. Thanks everybody.