This week’s guest post is courtesy of author/book blogger Salina Jivani of WordNerd Book Reviews. While reading and reviewing is her specialty, Salina’s piece today focuses on something far more important in the literary world: reading to and with children.
Definitely a G-rated change of pace from my usual blog fare but I know a lot of my cherished readers are also mommies, stepmommies, big sisters, and aunties. Read on to check out Salina’s top five reasons why reading to the little ones in your life matters…
After a long, grueling day of work, doing dishes and tidying up the house, relaxation and quiet seem like a long-awaited bliss for many moms. However, if you squeeze just another fifteen more minutes out of your evening for your little ones and cuddle up with a book, you’ll be transforming their future in ways you might not even realize possible.
We’ve all heard that reading at bedtime is recommended, but just how those few minutes can build a firmer, more competent future for your kids may surprise you.
Story books are designed for specific age groups and contain words appropriate for that age, with a few more challenging terms dispersed throughout. This is done intentionally to promote learning by inference. When children hear a word they don’t recognize, their brains work to try and attach meaning to it based on the context in which the term is used. For younger children, pictures may help with inference. When you get to the more challenging words that you think your child may have difficulty understanding, pause and allow them an opportunity to guess what the word means based on the context around it. For younger kids who can’t quite yet communicate, help explain the meaning of foreign terms by using vocabulary they’re already familiar with. For example, you might describe a tiger to be “a big, hungry cat.”
Aids Logical Development
Children who are read to regularly begin to develop a keen sense of logic by learning about things like cause and effect, events in a sequence, reality versus imagination, and right from wrong. Developing logic early on enables kids to be sound thinkers and decision makers both at an early age and even later on in life.
Creates Competent Writers
Repetition cultivates learning. And when you make it a habit to read to your children as often as possible, they not only listen, but also internalize the mechanics of good writing, including developing good sentence structure, articulating thoughts through words, providing sufficient details and creating a logical flow of thoughts. What’s even better is that they carry these skills forward with them as they grow older, giving them the ability to be strong, proficient writers as both children and adults.
Fosters Love for Reading
Habits are set early on in childhood. So if you get your child acclimated to reading at a young age, they’ll continue to harbor that passion well into the later parts of their life. Also, many studies show a positive correlation between frequent reading and increased intelligence in people of all ages. Making time to frequent book fairs and the library with your child will create excitement and empower him or her to become an early book lover and an intelligent, young individual.
Improves Language Mastery
Establishing books as part of an early routine in your child’s life can ground the foundation to a firm grasp on the English language. Improved pronunciation, comprehension and articulation are all just a few of the benefits that come with daily reading. Also, kids who read often are able to better communicate with and understand adults than peers who aren’t frequent readers.
But, wait, the advantages of reading don’t end there—mommies benefit too! After you get done committing some time browsing books with your child, make sure you set aside some reading time for yourself. Reading is equally as rewarding for adults as it is for our tiny counterparts. As we get older, reading on a regular basis helps keep your mind sharp, increases your ability to think analytically, reduces stress and improves your memory. Plus, what better way to teach your child the importance of reading than to model the behavior yourself?!
So the next time you hesitate about the extra time it takes to run through The Cat in the Hat, remember that those ten minutes could quite literally translate into success tenfold in your child’s future.
Thanks for joining us today, Salina. Readers, feel free to stalk this author at the following links:
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