Developing Young Readers: A Guide for Parents
Reading should be a pleasurable part of a child’s life - something that is part of each day. As a parent, if you accomplish this, you are guaranteed a child with a positive attitude towards reading! There are so many benefits to reading, some of which are crucial to a child’s healthy development. The best way to get your child hooked on reading is to read aloud to him/her when they are still too young to read themselves, so start when they are just a baby!
What are some of the benefits?
An Opportunity to Bond
Even if you are reading to an infant who doesn’t understand the words, they will enjoy the time they have to cuddle and will be stimulated and comforted by your voice. Your child will associate story time with love, affection and fun!
Language and Speech Development
Reading to a child stimulates their brain. Much of the intelligence children develop occurs in their early years. Reading aloud helps their auditory perception get a sense of how words sound. It also builds their vocabulary; when a child sees a picture and hears the word to match, they not only learn a new word but learn its pronunciation.
Increase their Attention Span
With the rise of technological gizmos and accessories aimed at today’s youth, many children have difficulty focusing. Reading to your child at a young age encourages them to tune in or focus on what is being said, creating the base for important listening skills required when they enter school. Not to mention they will have a real sense of sentence structure - a valuable skill when they start to learn about grammar!
Reading at a young age will encourage curiosity, an important trait that will help them expand their knowledge of the world and discover their personal interests that will lead to a happy life.