As a parent, you have lots of priorities that are important. You want to make sure your kids are safe, well-fed, and not showing the signs of a serial killer. Nowadays, we spend so much time worrying about these issues that we tend to forget another important one – mental stimulation. In order for your kids to grow and learn, you have to engage their minds as well as their bodies. An easy way to accomplish this is by taking the time to read to your child.
Even if you are already doing this on a daily basis, you may not realize all of the benefits your child gains. Knowing these ten reasons you need to read to your child will strengthen your resolve to continue doing so.
10 Reasons You Need To Read To Your Child
- Carefully select a story that engages and awakens your child’s mind. Books allow them to learn about experiences they might not have on their own. It helps them gain others’ perspectives and develop empathy for others.
- Reading out loud shows them what good reading sounds like. They are going to be exposed to other readers, such as teachers, and you want to make sure they have a strong base to work from.
- Sharing an assortment of books helps your child learn new vocabulary, different types of sentence structure, how to pronounce new words. As they improve their knowledge, it becomes easier to learn more down the road.
- Kids first learn words by repeatedly hearing them spoken. Reading to them helps connect the audible word to the written word. This also allows them to grasp that though some words sound the same, they are spelled differently.
- This might seem like a simple thing, but you are teaching them how a book works. They don’t start out knowing that you read the book from front to back, lines from left to right, or to start at the top of the page and work your way down.
- Hearing imaginative stories stimulates your child’s imagination. This fosters greater creative efforts in other areas of their lives, like play time.
- Listening to a story is an excellent way to start increasing their attention span. Even if they are bouncing around the room, they still continue to hear what you are saying and will eventually engage.
- Children look to us as role models. If you make reading a priority, they learn to treat it as one of their own priorities.
- Reading with your children is an awesome way to have one-on-one time with them. There is nothing else going on around them during the story and they are paying attention to just you. This typically leads to them getting closer to you to see the book and even sitting in your lap. It is a wonderful way to strengthen your bond.
- Hearing the human voice can be quite soothing, assuming it isn’t a child screaming in your ear. Why do you think yoga instructors use a nice, soft voice? It helps reduce your stress levels and is very comforting.
Reading daily, at a specific time, like bedtime, is great for building a routine. But you can also have unplanned story time as well. You are not only creating wonderful memories with your children, but also setting them up for greater things that impact the rest of their lives. There are no hard and fast rules for when or how much to read to your child. Even a few minutes every few days has great benefits.
Meet the Author
Jaime has a Master’s Degree in Neuroscience, but that did not prepare her at all when trying to figure out what is going on inside her son’s brain. She is an introvert with ADD, so she couldn’t pay you much attention even if she wanted to. Jaime blogs at The Unprepared Mommy where she tries to help other first-time moms not make the same mistakes she has.