Are you concerned that you are going to come across as “one of those pushy parents” if you read to your children early? Do you fear boredom or criticism from your older kids if you read to them? It might be a good idea to get past those fears – reading aloud to your kids is said to have many benefits.
Experts speculate that illiteracy could be greatly reduced if not eliminated if parents would read three or more stories a day to their children. Children who are read to not only tend to be early, proficient readers themselves, but they also tend to have a better grasp on language in general.
Studies have shown that kids do not learn as well from videos as they do from a live, personal interaction, even if the videos and person are teaching the same things. So while technology certainly has its place, children may not learn as well through a screen as from a real person.
Here are some other benefits of reading aloud to your kids.
1. Personal interaction
Reading aloud time is together time. It is a time set aside for you and your child to interact and spend time reinforcing your relationship. Some kids enjoy associating reading with something else positive – a drink, snack, or simply a time of quiet can be a positive experience for your child (and you!). Reading aloud can be bonding time.
Children who have an adult read to them regularly tend to have a much bigger vocabulary than those who were not read to. Also, kids who are read to also tend to exhibit a greater proficiency at learning new words. Read-to kids apparently develop an understanding of various sounds of words and of how words work in general, setting the stage for easier learning of new words and concepts.
3. A World of learning
When you read aloud to your children, you are reading about something, right? Books are a wonderful way to introduce your children to other cultures, family structures, history, animals, science concepts, and pretty much anything you want to read about. There are books available at just about every level on a huge number of subjects. It needn’t cost anything if you make use of your local library.
4. A love of learning
Reading aloud sets the stage for a love of learning that will accompany your child for a lifetime. It’s also been said that children who are read to have longer attention spans, which is also a learning enhancement.