Katie often talks about night time routines, because it’s important in getting your little ones (and yourself) to wind down and feel ready for sleep. One important part of a bedtime routine is reading! My daughter calms down when we sit and read multiple stories together.
But reading together is so much more than a routine! It’s a chance to bond with your child and make memories, watch them learn new words and concepts, spark their creativity and get a glimpse into their imagination when you ask what they think will happen next, and let them know they are important to you and worth your time, free from distractions like work and screens.
My daughter is two and a half and already has a great vocabulary (often surprising and impressing us with the words she uses) and even quotes lines from her books. It’s such a privilege to know I’m helping her grow by providing quality books, and spending quality time with her.
Research shows that the number of books a child has access to in his or her home is more important to their future success than their parents’ level of education! How’s that for a great reason to keep lots of books around?
Your child is also never too old to be read aloud to. Even once they can confidently read on their own, spending time reading aloud together is great for bonding, building confidence, sharing different perspectives on the topics you read about, and is also a good way for your child to learn words and hear stories that are above his or her reading level.
If you haven’t made a habit of reading with your child, it’s not too late to start! It’s also never too early to start! Reading to a child in the womb helps you feel connected and allows your unborn child to get to know your voice.
For a wonderful selection of children’s books for every age, and access to more great reading tips and a kids reading and birthday club, join the Set Sail with Reading group on Facebook. It’s a fun, no-pressure community dedicated to the love of books and growing our children’s worlds through reading.
Sarah McBride is an independent consultant with Usborne Books & More. She lives in Pennsylvania with her husband, their two and a half year old daughter, and another daughter arriving this summer. They enjoy reading, hiking, bike riding, camping, tabletop games, and other outdoor adventures. Sarah’s favorite thing about books is that they can take you on adventures to other places and times just by turning the pages.