Sunday, March 01, 2015

The Importance of Reading Aloud

The single best activity that I have ever done with my kids was reading to them aloud since the very first days of their lives. I am talking about the time when they were still residing in my belly... I would sit most nights and read the same book over and over to my son. I heard somewhere that although they can't understand the words you are reading, they sure recognize the rhythm of your voice. When my son was born, I sat every night in the same rocking chair and read to him Brown Bear Brown Bear book by Eric Carle over and over. Sure enough, it was his very favorite book for years.

Night reading became a habit in our home and we treasure it till today. Even though they can read to themselves, they both race every evening to pick a book that I will read to them aloud before the lights go out. We started with picture books but we recently moved to chapter books. Kids are older now and they can sit through longer reading sessions with no problem.

Here are some good points that could help motivate you to spend more time reading to your kids:
  • Reading aloud leads to language development in children
  • Reading aloud helps you bond with your child
  • Reading aloud helps kids build positive relationships with books
  • ... which comes hand in hand with developing love for reading
  • If kids love reading, they will have easier time at school learning
  • Reading aloud also helps kids practice listening
The above points are oh so true!!! I can't stress it enough how much kids benefit from reading... How much knowledge and vocabulary they build by reading books. Reading goes hand in hand with learning. If kids don't have connection with books, they don't have easy time learning. And it all starts with us parents...

As kids grow older, some parents don't see how reading aloud could be beneficial, since they can read their own books... The truth is that there are so many benefits in reading to your children at any age.

Here are some great benefits of reading aloud to your older children:
  • It helps parents and children bond over the topic they are reading about
  • It gives parents and children something to talk about
  • It helps parents to be role models to their older kids
  • It gives them opportunity to spend quality time together
About a year ago, we started reading aloud sessions in the morning by the breakfast table. We start with Bible story, memory verse, and prayer, followed by a chapter book. (Please see the book wheel under this article for the book recommendations based on our experience) I understand that this is not available to everyone and that unhurried morning is one of the perks of homeschooling... but try to choose any time of the day and devote yourself to your kids and a book. You will build treasured moments that will help you bond with your kids ... after all there is never too much time that you can spend with your babies, right?  ;-)

I had people ask me why would I be reading to the kids when they were only few days old... they can't even understand the words and the point of the story... To me it was a bonding activity and a habit that I was creating not only for them but also for myself. Fast forward 8 years later and you will find my kids in the evening snuggled in bed with me or their dad, listening to the book we are reading to them. They love those moments and I know that one day, they will pass it on to their kids.

Have a great time reading, my dear friends!



Anonymous said...

Wonderful post! I could not agree more.

Monika said...

Thank you!