I have been an avid reader all my life and I am thankful to my parents who inculcated this habit in me which was post marriage encouraged by my husband too (My birthday gift was a kindle 😎). I read my first book when I was around four I guess. I still have vivid memories of me sitting at the backseat of the car with a book in my hand 😊.
Reading is a very fulfilling and nourishing experience especially for children. Their young minds capture and grasp the information very easily. It is a very good idea to start reading to your child as early as possible. Now, you may wonder if I have lost my mind 😉 . So, let me give you a quick fact check. Your baby may not understand what you are reading but, he will surely enjoy your changing facial expressions, listening to your voice, hearing rhyme and rhythm and will love to be in your arms.
I started reading to Riaan when he was just ten months old. It seemed very funny when I began, as he would just look at me and blink. But, in a few months he could make sense of what I was doing and eventually there was a time when he began selecting the books and the pages he wanted me to read. And when this happens, be prepared to read the same story over and over again 😉.
Reading to children has a lot of benefits –
- It helps in brain development and makes them more imaginative.
- Helps them pick up the language skill.
- Stimulates curiosity in a child.
- Develops the child’s communication skills.
- Increases concentration, improves the attention span and aids in memory retention.
- My favourite pointer – it strengthens the bond between you and your child 😊.
How to begin?
The question looming in your mind now is how to go about cultivating this habit in your child. Mommies, don’t worry if your child is two or three and you haven’t started reading yet. It is never too late to involve them in this lovely journey and books entice children. It is very hard for them to keep away from those bright, colourful pages 😉. In any case, I have listed a few ways to give you a headstart.
- Start one step at a time and keep in mind that your child may not sit through the entire book in one go. If he does then congratulations 😊. You can conveniently quit reading all my ‘gyaan’. But, if your kid is like mine then the most important virtue for you is to be patient.
- Begin with one or two pages a day and slowly escalate it to more.
- Choose a beautiful, colourful and bright book. If you can manage to get your child to flip the pages on his own, you have won half the battle as this shows that you have got them interested in the idea of reading.
- Set a routine. There is no set time to read a book. You decide a favourable time for both of you. I initially used to read to Riaan after his evening playtime but now, we have transcended to reading at bedtime – just before we fall asleep 😊.
- Sometimes your child would just want to stare at the pictures in the book. Go ahead and oblige them and you know what? Cook up a small make believe story as well! They will love it.
Choose the books that you and your child relate to as every child has a different interest. Keep that as your foremost priority while purchasing books. Nowadays, the internet is full of options with an exhaustive variety of books. So, momma pick one and delve into this wonderful world of pictures and imagination with your little one.
Happy reading 😊
Do you have any all time favourite books that you read to your child? Drop a line so that I too can get my hands on them.