Encouraging early reading will prove to have endless benefits to last a lifetime. Several studies have indicated that children who are keen readers, are a lot more -advanced’ than their non-reading counterparts.
The fact is — reading is able to help in just about all learning areas, from languages to maths. Reading also helps to boost a child’s self esteem and confidence. Most knowledge can only be obtained by reading, therefore it is essential for your child to develop this interest, while they are still young.
The challenge however, is how exactly to encourage reading and how to help your child develop a lifelong love for books?
Ideas on how to get your child hooked on books
- If you have a toddler — choose colourful books with several illustrations to get your child interested.
- Read to a toddler as often as possible and use as much emotion as possible to get them hooked on the story.
- Give books as gifts as opposed to expensive toys.
- Be sure to limit your toddler’s TV time.
- Join your local library and take your pick from the recommended books for children. Libraries often offer story times during the holidays and this will help parents and children interact with other book lovers.
- Conduct a quick search on the Internet to find the latest book titles for children. Swap books with other moms or start a book collection at home. Always make sure that your curious toddler or preschooler has continuous access to -new reading’ material.
Advantages of reading
- Readers are in general known to have a better and longer attention span. Therefore, if a toddler has been encouraged to love books, they will find it easy to adjust when the time comes for Grade 0, or pre-school.
- Reading out loud to toddlers will enhance their listening skills — an essential skill they’ll need to advance in school (or in life).
- With books – boredom is never a problem. Children who have access to books will spend a number of hours paging through the books and will always look forward to story-time.
- Regular reading helps to increase vocabulary. Children also learn how to pronounce new words quickly because of reading.
- Reading time with mom or dad is also an opportunity for parent and child to bond.
- Reading books will help encourage your child’s imagination and curiosity.
- Books will grow with a child. Toddlers will love simple, rhyming books, while an older child’s attention will be captivated by fantasy books that describe faraway lands or people with magical powers.
Parents who know the benefits of reading will encourage a love for books and reading from an early age. This is perhaps one of the best gifts a parent can give their child. Reading has several benefits and besides being the perfect way to spend a rainy day indoors – reading will also provide dozens of practical rewards, that last beyond childhood.
– Kathy Baron