Story Time: Benefits of Reading for Kids 📚
Welcome back Sparkle Squad moms and dads! Ellie loves to take time out and get stuck into a good book, so here at the Sparkles HQ we’ve been having a chat about all the amazing benefits of reading for kids. Bringing books into the Sparkles’ daily routine is not only a fun (and simple) thing to do, but also helps with education, cognitive development, stress levels, mental health and much more. Here’s our list of all the reasons we came up with to BRING OUT THE BOOKS!
Benefits and Importance of Reading for Kids
Cognitive Development: Storytime and reading gives little ones an understanding of the enormous world and many cultures around them. They’ll be learning without realizing it and their young brains will gather valuable knowledge that helps them make sense of everything around them.
Concentration: Reading to kids helps improve their concentration, attention span and self-discipline as they learn to sit still and listen. Memory retention gets better too…all super helpful for preparing little ones for school!
Creativity and Imagination: Books give kids the chance to imagine characters, places, events and make-believe worlds! Even picture books help teach about nature, animals, family and the world around us. Stretching children’s imagination makes them more likely to be creative and reach for the sky, helping them at school, in their careers and future lives in general.
Empathy: The Squad will come across a whole range of emotions in books – happiness, sadness, jealousy, helpfulness, worry, nervousness, rudeness and so on. They’ll see how these emotions affect the characters and how others react. Not only will this help teach them to show empathy in the real world but also understand their own emotions better. That definitely gets a big ‘thumbs up’ from the Sparkles HQ!
Language Skills: A bit of reading or storytime each day will do wonders for the Squad’s communication and language skills. They’ll learn new words and phrases, grammatical structures, spelling and also how to use description. Vary the type of books the kids are looking at and you’ll be amazed how their speech and writing comes on in leaps and bounds!
Well-being: Stories are great stress-busters! They give us all a break from real life, so kids can temporarily leave their world behind them as they become drawn into the characters’ lives. And for parents who crave better sleepers, a bedtime story for little ones does wonders for a settled night’s sleep!
Talking Point: At the end of a story you’ve shared together, why not chat about it? Find out if the Sparkles enjoyed the book and why, ask who their favorite character was, and talk about twists and turns in the plot! They might like to draw a picture of a character or scene from the book. Slightly older kids could even set up a book club with their friends, to chat about books they’ve enjoyed or compare thoughts on one they’ve all read!
Start Young: Babies love to hear familiar voices so reading to them from early on will give reassurance and build a special bond between you. They’ll pick up that reading is a fun thing to do and with any luck will grow up with a big love of books and learning!
Folk Tales: And don’t forget about Folk Tales! Fun to read to the Sparkles, these stories are set in different times and cultures, and their morals teach useful life lessons. Even though they’re several thousand years old, stories like The Little Red Hen, Goldilocks and Jack and the Beanstalk are still worth hearing! When you get a moment, why not sit down with the kids and watch Ellie, Jimmy and Coach Rocco, having great fun with the Little Red Riding Hood Folk Tale in this episode?!
So whether you already have a bookcase overflowing with books, or you’re planning a trip to the library, have lots of fun introducing the Sparkle Squad to BOOKS! And perhaps keep in the back of your mind a great quote from Margaret Fuller, an American journalist and critic born in 1810:
“Today a reader, tomorrow a leader.” 📖