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Why Reading Aloud to Your Child Is Important

Approximately 55 percent of families report reading aloud to their children between five and seven days per week before the child turns six. Are you part of this group? If not, it’s time to start making reading aloud to your child a priority.

There are lots of benefits that come with reading aloud to your child regularly. If the idea of this feels overwhelming, here are some suggestions and resources for you!

Why Is Reading Aloud To Your Child Important?

First of all, by making a habit of reading aloud to your child, you can increase their interest in books as they get older. They’ll have positive associations with reading and might feel more inclined to pick up books on their own.

If a child doesn’t have a lot of exposure to books when they’re young, they might not have as much enthusiasm for reading later on. This can make reading feel more like a chore and could end up having a negative impact on their academic performance when they start school.   

Reading Aloud Helps Their Extended Attention Span

Reading aloud to your child can also help extend their attention span. If your child is used to sitting quietly with you while you read, they’ll likely have an easier time sitting quietly when they get older and start school.

Your child asking you to read the same book over and over is a sign that their attention span is improving. It shows that they’re engaged and are working to memorize the story. So, even if YOU are tired of reading the same book over and over, it’s really good for them developmentally.

Reading Aloud Helps Improve Language Development

When you read aloud to your child, you can help them to expand their vocabulary and improve their language development. There is even research that suggests reading aloud is more beneficial to vocabulary building than talking to your child.

The more words your child is exposed to when they’re young, the more words they’ll know when they reach school age. This will make it easier for them to express themselves both verbally and in writing.

Reading Aloud Helps Improve Reading Comprehension

Regularly reading aloud to your child can have a positive impact on their reading comprehension, too. This has to do with the fact that reading aloud can improve memory.

Reading comprehension is a tough skill, but it’s incredibly important for long-term reading success!

If your child has an easier time staying focused and can better retain what you’re reading to them, they’ll have an easier time comprehending when they go to school and start reading on their own or listening to their teacher. 

Reading aloud is also helpful for comprehension because it gives you a chance to emphasize important parts of the book. You can stop and talk about the critical details that your child ought to remember.

It Helps With Increased Creativity

When you read aloud to your kids, you can boost their creativity. The more exposure your children have to different types of people, situations, and events, the more they’ll have to draw from when the time comes to write or tell their own stories. 

It’ll likely be easier for them to picture different types of characters and understand ways of living that are different from their own, too. This is especially true when you make an effort to diversify the types of books you read to your child.

Reading Aloud To Your Child Helps You To Bond

Taking the time to read aloud creates a new opportunity for you to bond with your child, too. As they get older, your child might not remember the details of every book you read to them (although, you might be surprised at what they retain). However, they will remember that they got to sit with their parent and spend uninterrupted time together.

Remember, bonding doesn’t have to involve spending a lot of money. Sitting with your child and reading a book for a few minutes can be a powerful activity that provides them with a lot of benefits now and later in life.

Tips for Helping Reading Aloud To your Child Be Fun

Most parents know that reading aloud is important. But, with hectic schedules, it can be truly hard to find the time. If that’s you, here are some tips that can help:

  • Let your child pick the book
  • Start small with short books and short blocks of time dedicated to reading aloud (remember, even a few minutes of reading is better than nothing at all)
  • Get creative with your tone of voice while reading to increase engagement and make reading aloud more fun (for you and your child)
  • Explain words that your child might not know as you come across them
  • Ask questions after reading to see what your child is comprehending
  • Read aloud at the same time each day

This last tip can be especially helpful. If you make a habit of reading aloud at the same time each day, your child will start to expect it and will have an easier time sitting still and staying engaged while you read.

Reading Aloud With Audio Books

Another tip is to make audiobooks or even podcasts a priority in the car or while traveling! While sometimes actually holding a book can be tricky, audiobooks are a fantastic source of quality reading time.

My boys LOVE audiobooks and they’ve been an incredible tool to get them excited to read and focus on chapter books while playing or traveling.

Best Books to Read Aloud to Your Child

New reading material can also make reading aloud more fun and engaging, too.

Here are some great books to consider if you’re on the hunt for new resources to add to your kids’ collection:

Start Reading Aloud to Your Child Today

If you’re not currently reading aloud to your child, now is the perfect time to start. They can be any age!

Don’t feel as though you can’t read aloud to your child if they are reading independently… they may still REALLY love to listen to YOU read a book to them.

Pick up one (or more) of the books mentioned above, or reach out to your local library to borrow them for free, and start reading today.

If you want more focused literacy resources, be sure to check out my free literacy printables.

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