By the numbers
Wednesday, September 01, 2004
Back to books Start of 2004 school year means back to reading :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
School starts in September after Labor Day-or at least it is supposed to. But even at schools that call the children in early, the drill is the same: Hello, classes. Hello, books. Hello, teacher's supportive looks. It is the books we will dwell on this time.
300,000 Number of books published in the English language each year.
117,589 Number of libraries in the United States.
0 Number of books read each year by 44 percent of adult Americans.
53 Percent of American children aged 3 to 5 read to daily by a family member.
49 Number of minutes a day spent by children 6 or under reading or being read to.
142 Number of minutes a day spent by children 6 or under watching TV or playing video games.
4 Times as much money spent on pet food each year as on textbooks.
5 Top best-selling hardcover children's books of all time, from fifth to first: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Green Eggs and Ham, Tootle, The Tale of Peter Rabbit, The Poky Little Puppy.
84 Number of hours spent each year by average American reading books.
1,679 Numbers of hours spent each year by average American watching TV.
20 Percent of adult Americans unable to read a book.
20,000,000,000 Dollars, the estimated annual cost of illiteracy to government and business. 469 Number of books written by Isaac Asimov in his lifetime.
Zay N. Smith