At our educational daycare and preschool centers in Chicago and Evanston, IL, one of our favorite parts of the day is storytime. During this time, a teacher or an aid reads a story out loud to the children, often pausing to let the children examine the pictures, using different voices for different characters, and utilizing other tools to help the children enjoy and understand the story.
It is likely that you have a childhood memory of being read to by your parents, grandparents, or teachers. Reading to children will not only give them those good memories to look back on, but it will also have a lot of amazing benefits on their development. In today’s blog, we’re going to spend some time discussing just why reading to children is so important. If you live in the Chicago or Evanston area and want to ensure your little one is going to a daycare or preschool that values reading, consider Toddler Town! In the meantime, keep reading to learn about just a few of the benefits that children experience when you read to them.
A Bonding Experience At Any Age (That Builds Language Skills!)
Children begin learning from the moment they enter the world. During the first year of life, they are building a foundation of knowledge and skills that will help them communicate in the future. So even if your six-month-old seems more interested in chewing on a book than looking at it, keep going. By looking at pictures and hearing words, their brains are making new connections about the world around them. They are learning the patterns of speech which can help them understand more and communicate better as they get into their toddler years. In fact, one of the main reasons why toddlers experience the “terrible twos” is because they are frustrated by not being able to communicate what they want, need, and feel. While reading to your infant won’t give them fully-developed speech by the time they’re two-years-old, it can give them a head start in communication.
By the time your baby is a year old, they are already able to recognize pictures and images, even if they cannot talk yet. By pointing out animals or objects in your picture books and naming them, your baby is learning what a dog is or what a car is. You might soon find them pointing out cars, dogs, and houses on the way to preschool in the morning!
Reading is also a great bonding time for parents and babies (or grandparents and babies, older siblings and babies, and so forth). It’s a time when you are fully focussed on your baby and there are no distractions like social media or TV. You can start reading to your child from the day they’re born. However, if it takes you a few months to get into the swing of things, it’s not a problem. It’s never too late to make reading a habit!
Children who are read to often exhibit more creative tendencies and a bigger imagination. This is because they get the chance to explore concepts and ideas that are beyond what they encounter every day. Not only will this big imagination create a lot of great memories for you, but it will also help your child gain independence by being able to entertain themselves — a win for busy parents!
Better Attention Span
When you read to a child and they listen to a story, they are slowly building their attention span. Just like many things in life, your attention span gets better with practice. Whereas a child who is not read to regularly might only be able to focus on a task for a few minutes, one who is read to often may be able to focus on tasks for thirty or more minutes. As we said above, this is an amazing feat for a parent who needs to get the dishes done or cook dinner!
Did you know that children who are read to regularly — either at home, in their daycare, or both — are statistically more likely to graduate from high school? This is because literacy skills develop early in life. While there are always opportunities to improve literacy skills at any age, children who enter kindergarten with age-appropriate literacy skills are more likely to go into the next grade with the right skills, and the next grade, and so forth.
Choose an Educational Preschool For Your Child
Our Evanston and Chicago preschools put a huge emphasis on education. We follow an age-appropriate curriculum in our daycare and preschool classrooms so your children are always learning and developing while they’re at Toddler Town.
Because the research shows that reading to children is vitally important in the development of literacy and language skills, we are proud to have a huge library and incorporate reading into our daily schedule.
If you want to help your child get a headstart in life, consider an educational daycare and preschool like ours! You can learn more about our curriculum here so you can get a better idea of the lengths that our child care center goes to in order to provide your children with the absolute best pre-kindergarten experience.
We would love to give you a tour of our facilities or answer any questions you have about enrolling your child in our Chicago and Evanston daycare centers. Get in touch with the daycare location most convenient to you today!