What are the benefits of reading?
Imagination and creativity
Development of vocabulary
Speech and language development
Build and develops knowledge
Build empathy and social awareness
It is clear to see that there are an enormous amount of benefits to reading to your children from an early age!
How can I make reading more fun and enjoyable?
There are lots of different ways that you can bring story time to life, to help capture your child’s attention and to keep them captivated at your every word, making it a fun occasion:
How you read can make a massive difference; put on different voices for different characters, change the tone of your voice, use facial expressions and be enthusiastic!
Sing, rap, act out, use props or finger puppets - they can all help to engage your child.
Encourage the child to join in… can they recognise certain letters or words? Ask them questions about the pictures; what do you think is happening? What do you think might happen next?
Make it special! Read tucked up in bed or on the sofa, a special chair, in a den… reading shouldn’t be thought of as a chore but as something exciting!
Chose a book about what they are interested in or will enjoy, or let your child choose the book they want to read.
Who would have thought that a video of a father rapping ‘The Gruffalo’ to his daughter would have received so much attention? Within one week the video in question went viral, with the family appearing on shows across the UK and even in the United States!
The video itself is sweet, funny and extremely catchy and not only captures a lovely father and daughter moment but it also demonstrates how reading to children can be done in so many creative and imaginative ways.
The man in question is a Primary school teacher who often takes on the persona of MC GRAMMAR and uses rapping as away of engaging his students in class. He actually has a website with lots of catchy ways to help children remember different literacy rules which is worth a look!
What is clear from his light hearted message is one thing - the importance of reading which is what we wanted to highlight too :)
Reading is a fundamental skill for children to possess; it is a skill for life and something they will need and use every single day. Helping your child to develop a love for and interest in books from an early age not only improves cognitive function but also helps to develop emotional and social development as well.
What to read?
You can read anything: picture books, magazines, or books with out words, or books without pictures, listen to audio books, interactive books, use technology such as learning apps or games… there is an endless supply of resources available to you :)
There are so many amazing books to choose from, covering a whole range of genres, topics and interests!
Pop over to the Waterstones website to have a browse of the top selections!
Lead by example
Parents need to remember to read too. Research shows that children are more likely to love reading if they see their parents doing it as well… so go get yourself a good book!
Whether you are a skilled rapper or not, one thing you CAN do is read to your children. To nurture a love of reading and books early on can have so many enormous benefits to your child’s life and future! Unlock the gates and set their imaginations free :)