Reading aloud is one of the most valuable gifts you can give your children. In the simple act of reading to children, you lay the foundation for their educational success. In a 1985 report by the Commission on Reading entitled Becoming a Nation of Readers, one finding stood out:
"The single most important activity for building the knowledge required for eventual success in reading is reading aloud to children."
Reading aloud is a simple activity and a simple notion. In this simple activity, however, lies the key to raising children who love and value reading and who grow up to become good readers.
According to Jim Trelease, author of The New Read-Aloud Handbook, reading aloud to children benefits them in numerous ways. Listed below are only some of the benefits a child receives from being read to:
- Reading aloud provides a positive reading role model.
- Reading aloud creates a bond between the reader and the child.
- Reading aloud improves the child's listening comprehension.
- Reading aloud expands the child's attention span.
- Reading aloud helps develop the child's language skills.
- Reading aloud helps develop critical thinking skills and effective communication skills.
- Reading aloud exposes the child to rich vocabulary.
- Reading aloud exposes the child to good grammar.
- Reading aloud stimulates the child's imagination, creativity and curiosity.
- Reading aloud establishes the reading-writing connection.
- Reading aloud provides the child with a lot of background knowledge. The more a child is read to now, the more he/she will learn for use in reading later.
- Reading aloud nurtures the child's emotional development, raising his/her self esteem.
- Reading aloud is FUN, providing the child with the pleasures of reading!