Cultivating a love of reading is one of the most valuable things we can do for our children. The skill of reading will bring benefits that last a lifetime. Reading to your child is something you can do from birth, and many people read to their babies while the babies are still in the womb. How does this benefit your child, when they are yet too young to read or even speak?
There are several good reasons to start reading to and with your child as they grow:
Promotes a Love for It
Reading from birth may be one of the most enjoyable times you spend with your child. When you make time to read to your child, they will look forward to it, and the moments they spend imagining all the stories they hear. Reading on a regular basis will develop a love for reading that will always be with them.
When someone looks back on their childhood, it is not always the big vacations and expensive gifts they remember most. It is quite often the little memories that mean a lot to them, such as time spent with you, their parent. When you spend time each day reading to your child, you can rest assured that this will likely be one of their fondest memories after they are grown.
Builds a Strong Parent-Child Bond
Spending quality time together as a family is one of the greatest ways to build a strong and lasting bond together. When your child thinks about reading, it will remind him (or her) of all the good times shared with you and he or she will want to relive that experience. A strong parent-child bond will grow out of your time spent reading together.
Makes Room for a Habit to Grow
The longer you do something, the more likely it is to become a habit. When you make time for reading on a daily basis, a habit will grow. Reading will become a normal activity for your child, and they will begin to seek the opportunity to read more often.
Fosters Their Creativity
Reading is one of the best ways to stretch an individual’s creativity. If you want your child to be someone who loves to invent and create, then read to him. Choose books that are imaginative and exciting and see how quickly it fosters his or her creative streak.
One of the greatest advantages to reading to your child young is it facilitates learning, often a love for learning. One of the most exciting things to happen while you are ready to your child is for them to repeat the words they hear, or to point to the colors or animals they see, this shows they are learning and retaining the things they hear and see as you are reading to them. It’s also exciting when they get old enough to start repeating the story back to you. This shows you that they are tuned into that time you spend reading with them. They will learn while reading and love it.
Expands Their Language Skills
A child who is read to more often will develop better language skills. His vocabulary will expand to include more words, and longer words. His grammar will also improve as he hears correct sentence formation over and over. A child can learn to speak well simply through the enjoyable activity of reading.
Studies have shown that the more sounds an infant is exposed to, the wider a variety of sounds they will be able to make when learning their own language, as well as foreign languages. To give reading an even greater impact, ask your child questions throughout the story, and after you are finished. This will improve your child’s critical thinking skills in addition to all the other great benefits.
Reading is an activity that helps children grow and mature in every way. Reading to children from birth is a great way to bond and to expand your child’s world all at the same time. Grab a book and see how beneficial reading can be to your child, all the way from birth.