BECAUSE I BELIEVE reading books helps you get ahead, I am trying to collect more than 740 hard cover and electronic books in our home.
I'm fixated on 740 books because of the Library of Congress. Like many people, I consider the Library of Congress to be the greatest library on earth. It holds over 110 million items—books in 450 languages, irreplaceable national documents, priceless art works, and objects of cultural fascination. It started from a modest collection of 740 books purchased by the Congress in 1800. Today, the Library has grown to house hundreds of miles of bookshelves.
Sociologists tell me that the presence of book-lined shelves in the home and the intellectual environment those volumes reflect gives children an enormous advantage in school. Credible research about home library size was published in the journal Research in Social Stratification and Mobility. One finding says, “Growing up in a home with 500 books would propel a child 3.2 years further in education, on average, than would growing up in a similar home with few or no books."
I reckon you can get this same kind of positive effect from both books on the shelf and books on an e-ink screen. The research says “a child from a family rich in books is 19 percentage points more likely to complete university than a comparable child growing up without a home library.”
With third level fees taking an increasingly larger bite out of the household budget, I want to do my part to ensuring the greatest chance of success for the two pre-schoolers currently under our roof.
M.D.R. Evans -- "Family Scholarly Culture and Academic Success", 2010.