Parents instinctively know reading is beneficial to children, but it’s hard to find time to read between all the duties of your job, kid’s activities, and household duties.
However, research shows how reading to children positively impacts their lives. Here are just a few.
Reading Builds Language Skills
Since children learn almost everything from adults, children rely on adults to learn language skills from infancy to adulthood. While children pick up language by hearing adults talk, reading is even more effective at learning language.
When you learn a second language, the language makes sense when you put new words in the context of a story. This is precisely what reading does for babies and children!
Stories–especially good ones that can be read over and over–expose children to new words and provide meaning to words because they are in the context of a story. When a story is repeated, or maybe even memorized, children absorb the language to a greater degree because they are rehearsing the meaning of each word.
Reading Increases Vocabulary
Children who listen to books have a broader vocabulary and understanding of the world around them. They develop greater thinking skills and understand emotions better.
Reading exposes children to new, beautiful, and interesting words, which develops the brain. These children better understand narratives and picture the stories in their heads.
Reading Improves Literacy
Research shows a strong connection between reading aloud to children and advanced literacy skills. Children who were read to, beginning at six months, scored higher on literacy scores in formal schooling than children who were not read to.
Literacy impacts a child’s overall education, and by extension, the trajectory of their lives. Literate children are more likely to do well in school, which helps them in college, their careers, and the rest of their lives.
Reading Provides Time for Emotional Bonding
Children and adults alike experience a deep emotional connection when reading together. While it may feel like an inconvenience, reading to children provides quality time and memories for years to come.
Technology Can’t Replace Reading
If you want the benefits of exposing your children to quality literature and new words but don’t have the time, can’t you just put on a podcast, audiobook, or television series?
Simply put: it’s not the same!
Babies can’t make sense of stories without a visual context, but even the American Academy of Pediatrics states babies under two shouldn’t watch television.
Babies are fascinated by another’s facial expressions, inflection, and mouth, and need your physical presence to make sense of a story. Toddlers and young children may understand basic stories from an audiobook or television show, but there is no emotional bonding, and oftentimes, there can be a technology “crash” after turning it off.
How Do I Start Reading to My Child?
Hopefully, you are inspired to read to your child, but maybe you’re feeling overwhelmed and don’t know where to start. Luckily, reading to your child is easy!
First, set reasonable expectations based on your child’s age and how much time you have. Babies won’t sit for long periods of time, and children who aren’t used to reading stories may not sit for a long time, either. Start small by reading one short book and aim for just a few minutes of reading a day. Slowly add in one or two more stories, then add in longer stories.
Before you know it, both you and your child will enjoy reading together!
Crestwood Preschool Academy Values Reading
At Crestwood Preschool Academy, we understand how important it is to read to babies and children. That’s why we prioritize read-aloud time in our daily routine. While you should still read with your child, you can rest assured that your child is listening to quality stories and experiencing all the benefits of early-age literacy.
Crestwood Preschool Academy is proud to offer an outstanding educational and fun curriculum that prepares your child for kindergarten per state academic standards.
Contact Crestwood Preschool Academy today if you’re looking to give your child a head start in school!