According to the 2002 Survey of Public Participation in the Arts, there is a declining percentage of Americans, in particular young adults, reading literature. Today's youth are bypassing the works of authors that have endured for centuries; plays, poetry, and novels that embrace noble ideas, aspirations, and creative thought.

Alpha Omega Publications® is counteracting this alarming trend by providing both American Literature and British Literature electives for your child. Available in computer-based Switched-On Schoolhouse® and print-based LIFEPAC®, these semester-long literature courses will improve your child's reading abilities. Looking for more reasons to develop an appreciation for the classics in your child? Consider these five:

Literature improves communication skills
The easiest way to improve vocabulary, writing, and speaking skills is to study literature. While reading American literature or classic British literature, your children will absorb the words, grammar, and style of the author. Without realizing it, they'll learn from the best " John Bunyan, William Blake, William Wordsworth, Lord Byron, John Keats, Robert Browning, and the like. New words will be added to their vocabulary and they'll express themselves with a style that will also improve their writing and composition skills.

Literature teaches you about yourself
Since people think and feel the same as they did hundreds of years ago, the lessons learned from the characters and stories of yesteryear remains applicable to life today. Literature is full of human reactions that help children understand the nature and condition of the human heart. Poems, essays, diaries, and narratives bridge the gap of time as children explore another's message and lessons on life. As they respond to these lessons from the past, they become more aware of today's problems.

Literature teaches about the past
Just as history records the past, literature also reflects mankind at any point in time. Civic and historical knowledge is revealed and children gain a perspective of other cultures and their viewpoints. History comes alive in imagination and thought as they combine literature's portrayals of past events with ordinary lives.

Literature cultivates wisdom and a worldview
Issues of the world are connected to the emotions of the heart and good principles are formed when reading the classics. Children gain discernment as they view what is healthy and destructive in the world. Good and evil, injustice and its consequences all challenge them to make changes in society.

Literature also plays a large role in the development a nation's identity. The early Greek youths learned morals and political ideologies from the epics of Homer. Likewise, the abolishment of slavery in America's early history had more to do with Uncle Tom's Cabin than a politician's speech. Literature also helps children develop community pride and respect for other cultures.

Literature entertains
Although we live in a technological age, reading American literature classics is still fun. The characters, stories, and language in classic literature engages the mind, upgrades leisure time, and transports children from enjoying the mediocre to embracing the excellent.