Reading is good for you

A study published in December 2013 has demonstrated that reading increases brain activity. 17 students were asked to read a novel and had an MRI every morning. “On the days after the reading, significant increases in connectivity were discovered on hubs in the brain…”

Enjoy_ReadingReading is good for school achievement. In 2012, Nick Gibb, the UK School Minister, said that “Reading books for just half an hour a day could be worth up to 12 months’ extra schooling by the age of 15“. In New Zealand, a study carried out in 2006 had linked academic success and reading: High performers were more likely to read widely, use a library, have access to a range of books in their home, and enjoy reading (page 158).

Reading is good for social skills. A new research published in October found that “Reading literary fiction improves empathy“. In this study, the choice of book is important. In short, easy reads, whether thrillers or romance, are written to entertain the reader; little thinking is involved. Literary works on the contrary, engages the reader to imagine the unsaid or to elaborate characters, therefore sharpen the ability to understand others’ emotions.

Reading reduces stress levelsIn 2009, a research compared the heart rates and muscle tension of participants involved in different ways to relax.  Reading was the most effective way to overcome stress, more effective than listening to music, having a cup of tea, or even going for a walk!

Reading is good for your sleep! A study from the National Sleep Foundation conducted in 2004 concludes that reading as part of the bedtime routine will ensure a better sleep. 

Studies have also shown that reading throughout life is good for older people, even reduces the Alzheimer risk but I doubt I can convince teenagers to read using this reason!

Book lists for summer reading

What to read this summer? Which book to offer to please for sure? Here are lists to help you decide.

Click here for information on where to get them.

Number 1 !

MAC Favourite

Here are Mount Aspiring College most read books per year level. These lists are a bit rough as they are simply reports from the database, sorry, but they definitely reflect the most popular reads. They are not all good literature and some content is debatable… that’s why kids love them!

Librarian’s choice

Librarian’s choice lists are a mix of classic must-read books, award-winning or unforgettable stories.

Other Top books lists

Leave a comment below to recommend your favourite book!

Where to get these books

  • From the town library, it’s free! Here is their online catalogue.
  • From the local shop. You can phone to check if they have the book or order it.Wheelers_promo
  • From Wheelers, our main online book provider, who offer book credits to our school when you order (choose Mt Aspiring College at the checkout).
  • From Whitcoulls, who provided the excellent list above, have shops in Queenstown and also offer online sales.
  • Amazon of course have all the books of the creation, new and used, but the freight is often doubling the price of the book and it only says it at the checkout. Be careful! Amazon also offers the widest range of ebooks, but here again be aware that they cannot be read by many ereaders  (Kobo, Sony, Laser), only by Kindle ereaders. They can however be read on any Ipad or computer-like tablet or computer, using a Kindle App or reading on the cloud.
  • Finally, Book Depository established in tax-free Guernsey Island has unbeatable prices on new books and freight is free!

Offer a book for Christmas!

Teenager reading aloud

Do you remember those cuddling moments at bed time, when you read a story to your child when s/he was too young to read, thus nurturing your love for of each other and for reading? 

Bedtime story -ClipartResearch shows that reading aloud to children when they are teenagers is still extremely valuable. It:

  • Helps children to become better readers
  • Improves adult awareness of their responsibility as literacy role models
  • Improves the quality of family life

During read-aloud, we share the excitement, the suspense, the emotion, and the sheer fun of a new book and its intriguing or annoying characters.

We will not take our teenager on our laps, but we can still find fun ways of reading aloud with them. Sharing an article, a poem, an encyclopaedia entry or a few paragraphs from a book with your family at lunch, in the car (can be audio books), to entertain him/her while s/he is doing the washing-up, when s/he is sick in bed, or anytime, and keep it a regular habit. Take turns. They can read things to you too.

Chose read-alouds that relate to a current issue, a recent discussion or topic of study, or that you particularly liked, to foster a love of literature. Try different things. The wider the variety of readings, the greater the chance to meet or provoke the teen’s interests. It will often be the start of great discussions…

More on reading aloud in MACLIC

Have fun!


PS. Teenagers like to read aloud to each other too: I often witness groups of students happily sharing stories.

PPS. At MAC, reading out loud and reading together in unison is a practice used by many teachers to assist with the comprehension and enjoyment of text.


MACLIC logo invites parents and community
Tuesday 8th September 7.30pm

We are holding an open night in Mount Aspiring College’s library for parents and the community: we would like to invite you to both discover the College’s library and have an opportunity to contribute towards it.


  • Guided tour, slideshow, etc
  • A selection of Teenage books to purchase for your children or donate to the library (fundraiser for the library supported by Joy Brown ~ Young Reflections ~ Invercargill)

 You can also bring Teen Fiction or Magazines, in good condition, to donate to the library, for all the students to enjoy.

 *Wine kindly sponsored by Mount Maude and Minaret Peaks