Learning how to read is a skill that every child needs in order succeed. Research shows poor readers won't do as well at school and are more likely to have trouble finding a job and maintaining healthy relationships. There’s evidence to suggest that the benefits of being read to frequently as a child go way beyond just literacy skills. Read on to find out more…
It is believed that the stories we hear as children shape our view of the world. Most small kids live out their lives in quite a limited environment and reading to them can show them far-flung places, extraordinary people or eye opening situations which expand and enrich your child's imagination while also being an excellent way for dealing with real life problems at home when you're unable too deal on your own!
The effects of reading fiction to kids are actually pretty surprising, and the one that stands out most is their improved ability empathy. They also seem to develop more complex theory-of mind skills which will help them become better socializers as they grow up!
The joy of reading aloud to your children is a huge part of childhood that can't be bought or learned from any book. But what if you're too busy rushing around looking after them? Stories don’t have to live in books alone, but if you do find the time, reading aloud and giving eye contact are ways in which you can see excitement or confusion in your child. Excitement will show connectivity between you and your child, while confusion may suggest you need to take the story slower.
If you simply don’t have time to sit down with a book, then why no use toys to create your own stories? Use teddies, dolls, action figures or even Play-Doh. Create an adventure across the house or in the garden! Think about where these characters go, where do they meet?
Repetition is good, too! If your child is drawn to a certain book, let them enjoy it again! Maybe there’s an element they want to find out more about. Keep going with it, as you know it’s doing something good for your child.
There is no one size fits all for effective storytelling. We suggest a mix of told, read, watched and acted stories is the best way to enhance your child’s imagination.