It is undeniable that there are many benefits of reading for a child’s development. It builds so many skills – helping children learn, develop a relationship with the world, understand feelings and emotions and explore narratives and history.
Helping your child to read, and getting involved with their reading, is one of the most rewarding things a parent can do.
So, let’s dive a little deeper and properly explore the benefits of reading for children.
Eight Benefits of Reading for Children
1. Builds concentration
Focusing on a story, characters and plot is good practice for a child and an interactive way to develop focus. Skills like concentration and focus are very important for school aged children who spend many hours a day listening and interacting with peers and teachers at school.
2. Improves memory
To follow a story you need to be able to remember it. Reading an extended story over a number of nights you’ll build on your child’s memory skills. You could go one further and ask for a recap or a ‘previously on…’ before or after a reading session.
3. Teaches about the world
Reading, even more than film and tv, is a window to other worlds and times. This is because a child creates the world they’re reading about in their head as they read. Instead of simply telling a child ‘what is what’, a story book invites the child to construct a universe in their own mind.
4. Develops empathy
The more we know about our emotions and feeling, the better we can empathise with others and relate to their point of view. Reading stories can showcase those emotions and helps us pinpoint different feelings in ourselves and those around us. We learn about empathy, one of the most important social skills.
5. Expands vocabulary
Just 20 minutes of reading time a day will expose your child to more than 1.8 million words a year. That means an expanded vocabulary for your child and more ways for them to express themselves.
6. Boosts critical thinking
Comprehension skills and analytical thinking are built when we read more. Practice makes perfect, so get your child reading more and their skills in analytical thinking and comprehension can increase. Also, we are taught to not believe everything we read and the only way to better understand this is to read a variety of things!
7. Helps build positive self-image
Reading reveals different people of different shapes, sizes and colours and this too is important for children. Sometimes we don’t always see relatable images in mass media, reading is a place where we see that there are different types of people in the world, ones that we can relate to.
8. Better performance in school
Reading can improve a child’s results and performance at school. There is plenty of evidence that shows children read to more frequently tend to achieve higher scores in tests.
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