Bonding Through BooksPosted: February 20, 2012
By day, I am an infant teacher. By night, a mother.
In both of my worlds, I play an important role as a caregiver, nurturer, and teacher.
Today, our preschool was closed for Presidents’ Day, but the staff had in-service training (while my son was able to have a fun-filled day with his Grammy!). The topic of our training today was on literature for young learners, and I took a lot of great information from the class. Not only can I use that information for my classroom and to benefit all the tiny learners that I care for forty hours each week, but I can also take home for my own young learner (soon to be learners!) at home. Here is my favorite quote from today’s training:
“There’s a clear indication of a neurological difference between kids who have regularly been read to and kids who have not” –G. Reid Lyon, PH.D
As a preschool teacher, the children who are read to on a daily basis tend to stand out in the classroom. Overall, they seem to have earlier language and speech development, they have a wider vocabulary, and they usually are more capable of sitting to listen to a story for a longer period of time. Reading aloud to your children offers so many benefits which include the enhancement of creativity and verbal skills, the promotion of attention and listening skills, being able to apply knowledge and critical thinking, and the creation of lifelong readers. The Children’s Reading Foundation recommends that we read to our children for twenty minutes every day, beginning with birth. (I plan to pack some picture books in our hospital bag!) They also have a great resource guide for parents (and grandparents!) with suggested age-appropriate reading activities to promote literacy. We are currently using this as a guide for our five-year-old to make sure that he is well on his way to being a reader, before he starts Kindergarten this fall, and I love their suggestions!
And while all of these benefits are wonderful and will have positive impacts, my favorite part of reading to my children (the little one growing snugly inside of me has can hear now, so I read aloud for him too… can’t hurt!) is for the bonding experience that it gives us. It feels so relaxing at the end of each day to let my son bring to me a few books, as we lean closely together, and explore the world through children’s literature. I can still remember that kind of quiet moment with my own mother, and I cherish them greatly.
And I know my children will too.