Some of the fondest memories I have as a child are being read to. I have vivid memories of my mother reading to me each day from the newspaper, Reader’s Digest, and bedtime stories. I was also blessed to have two grandmothers who read to me each time we were together as well. My childhood was filled with adults in my life reading to me. And I reaped the benefits throughout my entire educational career.
And now as a homeschooling mom of three precious children (ages 6-14) I can see the benefits of reading aloud to my children every day. It’s a beautiful thing to behold. I’m grateful for this legacy in my life and want to share with you 4 reasons you should read to your children every day.
4 Reasons You Should Read to Your Children Every Day
It creates a unique bond between parent and child
One of the most amazing bonding moments with each of my children was during pregnancy. My husband and I both read every night to our unborn children as they grew in my womb. We noticed right away how they were responsive to reading and their movements lined up with the fluctuation of our voice within each story. It was some of the most amazing bonding time we had experienced with them and it was only the beginning! Each one of our children still enjoy being read to, even our 14-year-old! There is nothing like crawling into our big old bed with our children and reading a book together!
It helps naturally broaden your children’s vocabulary
I can always tell when I am around a child who is read to often. You hear it in their vocabulary and enunciation. It is the cutest thing to me when I meet little children who are well spoken and confident in the words they speak. I find that my own children will experiment using “big” words even if they don’t know what they mean. I love seeing them build this type of confidence as they progress through their literacy journey. And of course this increased vocabulary lends into reading well, spelling well, and even becoming better writers.
Children who are read to at home are more likely to become avid readers
Research continually shows that children who are read to regularly at home are more likely to become avid readers themselves. According to the U.S. Department of Education, children who are read to at home at least four times a week are more likely to read for fun on their own time and score higher on reading tests. So not only does reading to our children every day encourage them to become avid readers, but it also helps create the possibility of scoring higher on reading tests. I’ll take it!
Because reading aloud helps increase imagination and critical thinking skills
Research has shown that children who are read to, have an increased imagination.
Why? Because books take them on a journey outside of everyday life.
It is the journey that books can take our children on, that give them a chance to use and build their imagination. I know for sure that my children are always attentive when we are reading them books – literally hanging on to our every word. If we are reading longer books broken up over several days, they begin to guess what happens next and tell us that dream about the stories!
Related: How to Get Your Child To Read
Being read to also helps build critical thinking skills as it can introduce your children to several different concepts that require them to analyze and think outside of their everyday life and own understanding. This is a key component for success in school and out in the real world.
While these are only 4 of the reasons you should read to your children every day, it is only a small list of the many ways that your child benefits from this simple daily act.
If you have a day that you are not feeling well or are unable to physically be with your children, consider getting some books on CD at the local library that they can listen to at bed time or other times during the day. No matter how you do it, I just encourage you to do it! Your children may not understand what it is that you are doing for them just yet – but they will thank you for it later!