Some of my favorite memories as a mom to young children involves our time snuggled together reading a favorite book. While it can be hard as a busy parent to find time for reading to your children, the benefits of it are countless. I’ve compiled some of my favorites into an easy-to-remember acronym.
B is for bonding.
Reading gives children priceless one-on-one time with parents and strengthens the child-parent relationship. Reading is an island of calm in a busy world with children. Reading also is a gift for time-challenged parents, concerned with missing moments with their child. Reading gives both the child and parent time to connect. Try to incorporate reading as part of your bedtime routine as early as possible. There’s nothing better than a snack and story before bed.
R is for ready.
Reading helps children get ready for school and for life. The earlier a child is introduced to the concept of words, the better prepared he or she will be for kindergarten. Kids also can encounter new experiences through reading books, before they encounter them in real life.
A is for attention span.
The act of reading to kids helps them learn how to listen and pay attention. A child will pay attention because he or she doesn’t want to miss the good parts of a favorite book or find out what happens. If they have a story they love, you can help them learn to be patient while they wait for the part they love the most. Watch for the anticipation in their eyes, and don’t you dare skip a page!
V is for vocabulary.
Reading helps kids develop their vocabulary. Kids who have more words have better communication. This helps them be less frustrated and more confident, because they can better interact and communicate what they want so their needs are met.
E is for enjoyment.
Reading to your child plants the seed to love reading for a lifetime. Many studies have shown that kids who are readers do better academically from kindergarten on and enjoy school and learning more. If parents model reading as an enjoyable activity, their kids are much more likely to do so as well.
To make reading an important part of your family’s life, always keep books nearby—in the car, in your bag, near the high chair or changing table—so they are there when you have a little, precious downtime with your child.
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