How reading across fiction genres might build kids’ brain skills

Is your child a sci-fi lover, a history fan, or a fantasy nut? Discover kid-approved fiction books that pack surprise developmental skills.

Miranda Fields Stephani had been regularly reading the Epic Zero sci-fi series with her seven-year-old son. Then one day, he broke a flowerpot.

“Instead cleaning it up, he went to the garage and tried to build a machine to take him to an alternate universe where the pot was still whole!” says Stephani, of Summerfield, North Carolina. She and her son wound up repotting the plant in this universe, but Stephani was amazed to see how the book had fired up his problem-solving skills.

It’s no secret that reading is good for children both developmentally and cognitively. Studies have shown that kids who are readers or who are read to do better on standardized tests, have better concentration, experience less depression, and become better writers and, of course, stronger readers.

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