Reputable news sources generally feature exceptionally polished and varied vocabulary characteristic of what one would find in a university setting. Thankfully many of these publications are not entirely written in florid and inaccessible language. Instead, many of these periodicals use a combination of accessible writing punctuated by a few advanced words that would make any English teacher proud. Consequently, this provides readers with an understandable context so that they can understand unknown words. Reading the news helped me considerably when it came time to take Standardized Tests. According to The College Board, the new redesigned SAT is devoid of arcane and unused words that had previously been found in past editions of the test. However the vocabulary that the SAT possesses is on par with that which is found in The Economist. Of course beyond standardized testing, developing a robust vocabulary will help in turn improve your everyday verbal and written communication skills.
One of the major goals of the average high school English class is to help students improve their essay writing skills. While a newspaper article is not obviously written in the same way as an essay, a newspaper is a great resource to study and learn the various tricks and devices writers employ regarding subjects such as sentence structure and thesis formation. Furthermore, newspapers like The New York Times have their infamous editorial section which is filled with exceptionally well-written essays by former presidents, college professors, and Nobel prize laureates on subjects ranging from Nuclear Physics to Politics. Other than being incredibly enriching, reading these essays will expose you to some of the skills and tactics used to write compelling and professional essays.
The old adage “practice makes perfect” certainly holds true with regards to reading. It seems obvious that the only way for someone to get better at reading is of course by reading. In general, reading a little bit every day will help to develop your reading ability along with the other skills associated with reading such as analytical thinking, focus, and memory. Reading the news is different from reading a novel like The Great Gatsby as the news is intended to deliver information. From the standpoint of a high schooler reading the news is great practice for the reading comprehension portion of the SAT. The English section of the SAT includes articles and passages where test takers must read and answer questions regarding the subjects and structure of the article. If you are used to reading articles and essays, this section of the test can be a breeze.
Reading the news for fifteen minutes a day is a great way to build your vocabulary, improve your writing, and better your reading. Other than the aforementioned benefits, the other obvious benefit that you gain from reading the news is your absorption of general knowledge regarding the world around you. As following the news becomes a habit, your outlook will widen as you will become incredibly well informed. Reading the news enables you to take part in every discussion pertaining to the world’s current events and allows you to relate to currents events or politics. Reading the news will allow you to thrive in the classroom and in the world beyond the classroom.
Recommended News Sources
- The New York Times
- The Wall Street Journal
- The British Broadcasting Corporation
- The Guardian
- Al-Jazeera News
-- Gabriel Moran