In a tech-savvy world, there is a lot of focus on various tools and games that can help familiarize children with various ways to learn electronically. Having appropriate access to technology is a concern for many parents; however, the children are going to be just fine. For children in this generation, learning tech is intuitive and isn’t something we really need to focus on teaching.
When educators and researchers look to determine what is going to make our children most successful in their academic careers, the answer remains the same, year after year: Reading to your child is the single most important factor in raising successful, lifelong learners.
Not only does reading to your child regularly help to build a successful learner, but there are also several other benefits that reading to your child provides:
- Helps children learn how to handle books as well as the mechanics of how to read (turning pages, front to back, left to right)
- Builds bonds with the person reading – there is nothing like the cozy feeling of sitting on your favorite person’s lap and spending quality time
- Reading helps build speech and communication skills and introduces new vocabulary to children
- It sparks curiosity and imagination
- It increases cognitive development and increases empathy
- Reading helps improve sleep and reduces stress for both the child and adult
- For adults, reading to a child can lower your blood pressure
- Reading with children helps them learn patience, from both learning how to anticipate the ending of a story but also learning to sit still and complete tasks
- It helps improve memory, critical thinking, and concentration
- It reduces screen time. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, screen time should be kept to one hour or less for children ages 2-5 and ZERO screen time for children under 2 years old, except for video chatting
One of the reasons we wanted to host a Scholastic Book Fair this year is that we believe so strongly in the power of reading! We feel so strongly that reading to children is vitally important to their growth and development!