The ability to use language to speak, listen, write, and read or the ability to read and write is the conventional definition of literacy. Literacy, in modern context, refers to writing, and reading at a particular level that is required for communication to take place or where a person is able to communicate and understand ideas according to their society.
Literacy involves continuous learning that can enable an individual to develop their potential and knowledge, achieve their goals, and participate to a greater degree in society. Studies have shown that learning to read at an early age can significantly increase a person literacy level and information at readin.org is a great resource that can explain method of how to help children learn to read.
According to the United Nations, in 1998, research showed that illiteracy rates included 20% of the worldwide population. This study indicated that this 20% were unable to write and read a simple sentence in any language. When a person is taught literacy this include them having various sub-skills such as vocabulary, comprehension, fluency, decoding, and phonological awareness.
When a student masters these sub-skills they can become proficient readers and as stated earlier, reading can increase a person’s literacy level. However, reading does not come naturally; the human brain is designed for the spoken language but is not designed to process the written language. For reading to take place, a code that maps human speech sounds into written symbols must be mastered. It takes someone who is trained in this specific area to make this code easier to understand.