Friday Round-Up: Why, What and How to Read to Your Kids
As a writer, I’m a HUGE fan of reading. I have always appreciated quiet time with a book and am so psyched to be instilling that in my little munchkin. Soooo, I was more than happy to see in the newspaper over the weekend that when you read to your kids, really young kids, it changes how their brains listen as they get older. That is so rad. That’s why this post is a sort of round up of information and ideas to get your babies, toddlers and youngest kids in the habit of reading and loving it and learning skills for life while doing it.
Why Read to Young Kids?
They’ll be smarter than the other kids
This recent New York Times article Bedtime Stories for Young Brains explains research done on kids’ brains who have been read to vs kids who haven’t been read to that much and how they react to story time. It’s pretty astonishing to see the difference in brain activity. So, start reading to your kids every day, multiple times a day if you can. And, if your kid wants to hear the same story 7 times, humor them. They’re learning skills that will lead to a brighter future.
What to Read to Them?
Some Parts are Not for Sharing
Some Parts are Not for Sharing is a cutely illustrated easy read that helps kids understand what their private parts are and what to do if someone else touches them. It’s a book that should be part of every kid’s regular reading list. Too many kids (1 in 4 girls and 1 in 6 boys) are molested and most first experience it before they’re 4 years old. It’s horrible to think about, but even more horrible to ignore. Help your children have the tools that they need to protect themselves when you’re not around. In fact, I don’t know why there aren’t more books that help kids recognize and deal with all types of abuse. Right?
Where to Read to Them?
Create a rad reading zone
In our house we have “the big green reading chair” and a set of book cases that are stocked only with books for him to read in a place that is just for reading. Sometimes we read together, sometimes he takes books off the shelf and flips through them on his own. Both are awesome. To set up your own rad reading zone that becomes one of your kid(s)’s favorite places to hang, I love this kids chair and tree bookcase from All Modern, click on the image and it’ll take you to where you can buy them if you’d like. A designated reading zone demonstrates that reading is so important that it has it’s own place to do it. That makes a big impression on your little one’s mind. The kitchen is for cooking, the bathroom is for taking a bath, the bed room is for sleeping and the reading zone is for reading. If you can get your kid to appreciate eating a balanced diet, to enjoy cleaning him/herself in the bath, to know how to sleep well and to read often, then you can take a vacation and leave him or her with grandma to spoil without worrying for a second that any damage will be done.