Matthew Davies Provides You with Reasons That Reading is Important for Your Brain

Introduction

Books are an archaic form of recording information. Man discovered language which became the ultimate tool for communicating with other individuals around you. Thoughts are fleeting and volatile. It is when they are put down on paper that they become immortal. Our special guest, Matthew Davies has taken up the responsibility to reinstate the necessity of reading in the present era of smartphones and the internet.

At least once in your life, you must have experienced that deep connection with a certain person. Someone who was on the same page as you and talking to who was nothing short of a delightful experience. In a way, books are similar entities. They are the accumulation of thoughts, beliefs, and stories of another individual. They teach us about centuries-old cultures, customs, societal structure and the psychology of people.

The Reasons

The enthusiasm for reading a book is very important and can go a long way in shaping your mind and intellect as you grow up. Here are a few more advantages of reading a book:

1. Mental Stimulation – The brain is a very efficient tool, but only when you make it work to its fullest extent. Studies show that people with bad reading habits have a higher risk of developing dementia and Alzheimer’s. Reading stimulates specific parts of the brain and shapes the neural pathways which are responsible for transferring information.

Synaptic pruning is a medical term. It states that behaviors that aren’t used often and rarely accessed information may get completely lost. Mentally straining activities may feel uncomfortable, but they contribute greatly towards maintaining a healthy brain.

2. Social Skills – People prefer interacting with interesting individuals, those that have substantial knowledge. Such information is obtained via real-life experiences and also by reading books. Thus, books can empower you with information, which always comes in handy when you’re starting a conversation.

A recent study revealed that reading fiction allows the reader to develop something known as the ‘theory of mind’. This is the ability to understand the mental state of others around you, simply by talking to them. A unique skill indeed, one that will help you significantly with your social skills.

3. Memory Enhancement – Reading is not just about looking at pictures and deciphering them. When you read, you’re stimulating both the visual(imagination) and language part of your brain. It is an exercise that exerts your brain and improves its memory capabilities.

Mental stimulation is known to enhance thinking and analytical skills, all the while strengthening your memory. As you age, your brain undergoes a steady rate of memory deterioration, one that can be counteracted with regular reading habits. 

Conclusion Reading is a very important skill indeed. We cannot emphasize the value it holds in developing the young and old minds alike. Matthew Davies is also an avid reader and speaking from personal experience, he states that regular reading has enabled him to achieve his present state of intellect. So, if you want to stay sharp, start reading books.

Get Your Chance for the best Chinese

Get your favorite movies or TV shows and watch them in Chinese with subtitles. If it is a movie that you have seen, you will be able to follow the story, even if your Chinese is still at a basic level.

Download podcasts (that is, a series of lessons in mp3, today there are many, even for free) or audio-books and listen to them while you go to work.

Sign up for a website where you can find people willing to learn and teach any language. For example, you can find a Chinese willing to talk to you for half an hour a day in Chinese or as long as you want and then speak with him in Spanish. Do not underestimate the chat. Writing is important to strengthen words and grammatical structures in memory. The use of the best chineselanugage school in Singapore is there now.

Grammar

It is useless to try to avoid it. A little grammatical foundation is necessary. I’m not saying you have to learn all the sentence structures that are in Chinese (there are hundreds of them) or all the classifiers; but at least you have to know how classifiers work, how a sentence is structured, how to use the particle 了 (le), the use of the passive and so on.

Buy a Chinese grammar

You are not obligated to follow the order of the book. Take a look at the index and study the rules that you think may serve you immediately. When you try to speak Chinese, look and note the points where you get stuck or you are not able to express yourself. Half of the cases will surely be due to lack of adequate grammatical structure (while sometimes what is missing is vocabulary).

Review

To speak Chinese successfully you will have to memorize many words (verbs, nouns, adjectives, etc). To get the best results I advise you to download Anki , an “intelligent” flashcard program that allows you to remember the words you want to learn in an effective way.

I am so convinced of the effectiveness of flashcards that if I were still in college I would use Anki to study mathematical formulas. Here’s a brief explanation (summary of the article I just linked a little above) of why you should start using a program like this:

The use of flashcards simulates an “interrogation”, that is, a question / answer process that forces you to dig into the memory until you get the correct answer or not. The main reasons that active memory is more effective than passive study are two:

  1. “Remembering” something strengthens memory, which increases the chances of retaining information.
  2. If you do not remember the answer to a specific question, you know that you need to spend more time with that concept instead of indiscriminately repeating everything you are studying.

There are many programs that allow you to study with flashcards. But Anki’s strength lies in his algorithm, which takes into account the wrong answers, “discovers” your weaknesses and forces you to spend more time studying the information you do not yet know, instead of going over what you’ve already learned by heart.