This is a very interesting question which elicits a number of very important answers.
Reading is good for your brain! “Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body” Joseph Addision wrote this quote 300 years or so before scientific studies showed clearly that blood flow to the brain and connectivity in the brain both increase when you read a book.
Reading introduces you to new ideas and invites you to solve problems. Have you ever solved the case in a novel or predicted the end of the book? Reading helps you detect patterns and assimilate new ideas.
Reading improves your conversational skills and makes you a better writer, not to mention all of the new vocabulary that you come across and learn. You will become more articulate.
Reading improves your self discipline and helps you to focus. It practices your concentration and helps you with any tasks that require good concentration.
Reading reduces stress, can inspire you and can also increase your cultural knowledge - you can learn about a new place, somewhere you have never been, with the expense of going there.
The list of things that improve when you read is remarkable.
One study at Yale University even found that reading for 30 minutes a day can increase the length of your life by 23 months!
Personally I read for the enjoyment and the escapism of being in a totally different world, just for half an hour!
This is why we now expect all students at Fakenham Academy to have some reading material with them every day and that they should use this when asked and also when they have a spare few minutes.