Books are a magical way to spend time with your kids (yes, even babies). Reading gives you a way to bond without screens and children’s songs on repeat 500 times a day, and they’re just plain fun to read. Also, there’s an unbelievable sense of accomplishment and pride for both of you when your child learns to read a new word by themselves! So with that in mind, we’re going to check out five reasons why you should read with your children.
5 Reasons to Read with Your Little Ones
It fosters future academic success
While reading (or being read to), children come across vocabulary and grammar structures that will give them a boost when they start writing by themselves. New words also pique their interest, motivating them to find out what it means and add it to their own repertoire of words. Apart from simply reading to your little one, the Long Island Press offers tips to incorporate different reading activities to change things up a bit.
Reading provides kids a way to make sense of the world around them
During the first few years of life, children have limited exposure to the world. First, their parents are their entire world. After that, they learn about their home; rooms, pets, items that they interact with, and family members. This stage is usually comfortable for them, but they get taken out of that zone quite fast when they start kindergarten or daycare. According to this report from Scholastic, “Kids also turn to books to connect them to the world at large.” Reading with your child helps them make sense of things they see (or will see soon). The more exposure they have, the more comfortable they’ll feel.
Reading teaches kids empathy
Have you ever grown attached to a character in a book? Felt what they felt, thought what they thought? Your kids will do the same when they read. A SymptomFind article about teaching empathy explains that children emotionally connect to characters in stories, and younger children who are reading books with illustrations can still name the emotions on the character’s faces. Teaching empathy is a great way to prepare kids for socializing with others, and “putting themselves in others’ shoes”.
Books make great gifts
Do you find shopping for kids’ gifts difficult or expensive? When I was 6 or 7, I got the best Xmas gift yet: A collector’s edition of Little House on the Prairie. It didn’t matter that I had no notion of what a prairie was, or why Laura Ingalls Wilder was so important; but it struck a spark in me. Why? Because the pages of the book were gold-gilded, so it was the fanciest thing I’d ever seen. If you want to make your kid’s eyes light up, Local Anchor has some great book gift ideas to help you.
It gives them something to do
Books have a way of pulling the reader into the imaginary world they’re reading about. It distracts us, and gives us something else to focus on. This can be particularly useful for children who have become fixated on one type of distraction. It’s healthy for children to have a variety of different, enjoyable activities available to them, and it’s even better when they’re activities you can do together!
If you haven’t already, give reading with your little ones a try. It’s a fun, relatively affordable way to bond. Also, it’s sure to give your child a head start in school (which is never to be underestimated).