These days bedtime stories are being replaced with bedtime cartoons and it’s easier to find a child with a mobile device than with a book. Many of us forget about the numerous advantages coming from the good old reading to your child. Reading to your child is not only a fun activity and a way of decreasing the time they spend with digital media – it also benefits them in several other ways. Check out why picking a book tonight and reading to your kid is a worthy thing to do.
1. It helps you create a bond with each other
Reading aloud to your child, at least for 20 minutes a day, allows you to spend quality time with your child. What’s more, it is a perfect opportunity to talk with your child and discuss real-life experiences, no matter if the topic concerns serious matter like discrimination or a lighter one like their favorite pastime.
2. It gives your child a better start in the future
According to the research by the Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research from March 2013 children four to five years of age who are read to three to five times a week are six months ahead of their peers in terms of reading skills. Those kids who are read to on everyday basis are approximately a year ahead of those who are read to less frequently. That’s a tremendous advantage achieved through this seemingly unobtrusive activity.
3. It expands their vocabulary and improves other language & communication skills
If you read to your child at least 20 minutes every day as a result they are exposed to about 1.8 million words of text every year! Reading to kids also provides them with vocabulary and expressions they are able to use when talking to others. Some books are very descriptive and they use various grammatical structures, therefore it is a perfect opportunity to pick up new words. Moreover, it builds their language skills before they are even able to talk. Another research shows that the more words parents use when speaking to an 8-month-old infant, the greater the size of their child’s vocabulary at the age of 3.
4. It supports their reading skills and encourages them to read
Surprisingly reading to your child is linked to differences in brain activity supporting early reading skills. Surprised? Read what John Hutton, the study author said in his statement:
“(…)reading exposure during the critical stage of development prior to kindergarten seems to have a meaningful, measurable impact on how a child’s brain processes stories and may help predict reading success,” ” Of particular importance are brain areas supporting mental imagery, helping the child ‘see the story’ beyond the pictures, affirming the invaluable role of imagination.”
Reading to your child also motivates them to start reading on their own and to discover themselves the exciting experiences resulting from reading.
Sites worth checking out
Equipped with such knowledge you probably want to rush to read to your child. However, before you do that, take a look at bunch of sites promoting early literacy development in children.
- Literary Connections – tips for teachers and parents for reading aloud
- Zero to Three: National Center for Infants, Toddlers and Families – tips and tools supporting early literacy in small children
- Literacy Center Education Network – a site dedicated to designing education experiences for young children
- Get ready to read – lots of useful information for teachers and educators on early literacy
Thanks for reading and see you next week!
Magdalena| Appetite For Education
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