Reading - Term Overview

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Reading is a process in which an individual knows certain information through visual or written language. The reader confronts certain words, numbers or symbols, translates them into information within her mind, decodes them, and learns.

Reading involves pronouncing written words, identifying and understanding them. At the textual level, reading is understanding a text and extracting its meaning.

Types of reading

- Recreational reading: Reading is used as a method of entertainment.
- Reflective reading: Some message, advice or teaching is obtained from the text read and it's reflected on.
- Superficial reading: A text is read quickly to know its general content and to know if it will be useful or of interest.
- Informational reading: A text is read to know information.
- Musical reading: Symbols that reflect musical sounds are read.
- Braille reading: A reading and writing system is used that is done through touch.

Reading history

Reading has its origin in the appearance of writing in 3500 BC. C, when clay was used as a support to graph, account for goods and merchandise, and retain information. Reading was based for a long time on the understanding of symbols and simple codes accessed by only a small portion of the population who could write, read and interpret them.

Through the years, the different civilizations developed an increasingly complex and rich writing, faced with the need to transmit a greater quantity and quality of information. As writing became more complex, reading became a public and oral activity. The texts were read aloud in ancient Greece and in the rest of Europe among thinkers and monks.

The modern printing press that emerged in the 15th century allowed the diffusion of texts, which facilitated access to reading. The appearance of punctuation marks and character spacing made writing easier to interpret. An individual and silent reading began to develop that by the 19th century spread among a large number of the population.

The techniques and forms of reading have remained almost unchanged since then. The appearance of new media (material and digital) brought content closer to a large portion of humanity, although there are still millions of people in the world without access to this right.

What are the advantages of reading?

Reading is a cognitive process that has many benefits for people's mental, emotional and social health. Those who read more regularly acquire what is known as a " reading habit." Among the main advantages of reading are:

- It allows to acquire knowledge and increases communication skills.
- Helps develop the ability to analyze and solve problems.
- It's an entertainment option.
- It allows to develop empathy and interpersonal relationships.
- Enrich the inner world.
- Expand vocabulary and encourage writing.
- Stimulates concentration.
- Encourage the imagination.
- Exercise neural connections.
- It allows to release emotions.

Reading techniques

- Silent reading: A reading is carried out and the words aren't pronounced aloud but inward. The entire reading process is individual and the text is interpreted in the mind.
- Oral reading: A text is read audibly. This type of reading is essential in the learning stage.
- Sequential reading: The text is read from beginning to end without interruptions or omissions.
- Punctual reading: Only the passages of interest in the text are read.
- Intensive reading: A text is read with attention to every word and detail.

Reading as a process

Learning to read is a process that begins at a very early age, between the ages of five and six in elementary school. Learning to read opens the doors of education and writing, which is another important process in the intellectual formation of a person.

To make the reading process possible, there are several aspects that are put into play. First of all, the physical issue, you need eye movement and fixation of sight to read, since this process involves visualizing words or symbols.

Then there is a process of phonation (conscious or not) in which reading passes to speech and hearing to the ear. Finally, the cerebration comes into play so that the information reaches our brain and we can understand.

There are different types of reading, which are adapted to the needs of the reader. A deep reading requires greater concentration and attention, as well as more intense intellectual work.

A quick reading, on the other hand, seeks to detect the most prominent parts of a text and not delve into it. A review reading supposes a previous analysis reading , such as a rereading of a text already read.

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