Why Children Need Books
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Why Children Need Books

You Can Give Your Child the Gift of Reading Fortunate are the children who have parents who read to them.

Giving a child the gift of reading begins in the first months of life.

The way you value books and reading will be handed onto your child. Your actions will prove you do.

I was told the story of a young woman who read to her baby while still in the womb. She knew about the importance of reading to young children so she thought she would begin straight away. It was her university thesis, but she read it with love and spoke to her child about the contents.

I saw the love behind the situation and how the child experienced a loving parent. I hope the father felt the same way as his input is just as important.

Books can be used to bond with your child.

  • They entertain, comfort, stimulate your child’s imagination and the best of them can provide emotional security.Does your child want you to read the same story over and over? I am sure you enjoy doing so. Through books and reading, you can build a strong and loving relationship that can last your lifetime.
  • Parents are entrusted with ensuring their child develops an understanding of how the printed word opens up the door to knowledge and personal development. An affinity with print has to develop well before your child starts school.

Today the best books for children are readily available.

Sharing a book means you both experience something in common. Listening to your child’s comments about the story and characters and illustrations in a well-written book will deepen the emotional ties between you. You are also showing how you value their opinions. This can help with the teenage years!

How to Choose the Books to Share

  • Research the type of books available. Read book reviews and look for lists by people who have experienced feedback as to a book's value. Browse in bookshops to get ideas.
  • Always note the publishing details. The most important are the title, author, publisher and where possible the publication date. You can find them on the title page of each book. The publisher can be found on the back of the title page if it is not displayed on the title page.
  • The above is the information you need to give to a librarian or bookseller so they can identify the book and get it for you.
  • Second-hand booksellers (online and off) and charity shops can be great sources for children’s books. Many classics can be found there. Your child does need to have a collection of loved books.
  • Ask your local librarian and bookseller for ideas. They are trained to give you recommendations. They also receive feedback about books from other parents they can share with you.
  • Visit the library and bookshops regularly. My youngest grandson and I visited a local library each week for a year when his elder brother was in art class. He would browse among the picture stories, sit and look at them and share them with other children. He is a teenager now and a committed reader. He has read numerous books in a number of genres.
  • Libraries often have a number of storytelling sessions you can take your child to. Here you can meet others and your child can see there are other children and parents who value books.

I am not encouraging you to teach your young child to read. There is no evidence to suggest learning to read as a baby or very young child is beneficial. I know some children appear to teach themselves to read by watching the print as a parent reads to them. This is impressive but not the goal for reading books to young children.

Young children need loving parents, play and stories to enjoy not formal reading instruction.

My grandson learned to read quickly and easily in his first year at school.

I have written about teaching a child to read here if you want to know more about how children learn to read.

One of life’s most rewarding roles is being a parent who reads to their child.


Street Talk

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