Many people have a children’s library with plenty of books. Every once in a while you will see the mother (in most cases) sitting on the sofa or on the bed reading to her children. What are some of the benefits of reading out loud to your children? All of us can do it and we can be enriched by the process. Here is why.
Parents should spend time reading to their children. It is a wonderful experience for the children; it does wonders for the parent-child relationship and it is a heart-warming experience for the parent/reader.
At the earliest stages it means sitting an infant on your lap and flipping the pages of a picture book. The parent can tell, or ask the child to explore the page. Regardless, for the child it is a time for special attention and a one-to-one quality experience with the parent.
As a child grows he will learn to equate the pleasure of reading with the pleasure of the special attention he receives from the parent. This pleasurable “transfer” experience is one the child will recall even much later in life. As the child continues to grow and is able to read, the experience may be done in reverse as well. Having a child read aloud with feeling and inflection, to the parent, will also become a cherished pleasurable experience. It can also be a wonderful family experience.
The first message the child receives when he sits down in an easy chair with a relaxed mother or father is that he matters; he is important. Mommy/Daddy is setting all else aside to be with me. The parent, in turn will cherish the few focused minutes of pleasure with an attentive, receptive child. It’s not only the child who will be making memories, it’s the parent too.