Superheroes inspire boys to read

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Teachers should call on the masked blue-and-red superhero and other comic book characters to help solve one of the mysteries of literacy, why boys lag behind girls, new educational research has concluded.

Comics have “untapped potential” when it comes to addressing the gender gap, and have been overlooked by some teachers who fear that boys engrossed in them are wasting their time, it says.

The study - a meta-analysis of a series of research projects from around the world for the Canadian Council on Learning (CCL) - found that boys who read comic books regularly also tend to read more text-based material and report higher levels of overall enjoyment in reading. It adds that the pictures can also help readers develop visual literacy.

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