As long as I can remember, I have loved to read. As an adult, I still read every single day. I will read everything and anything, and I really enjoy sitting down with a book and a cup of tea, and just relax. It even helps me sleep at night.
This love of reading stemmed from my mother. When I was a child every night she would read my brother and I bedtime stories. I looked forward to going to bed and listening to her read the stories each night to me. Her story telling was (and still is) so captivating and exciting, many people have said that she should write stories herself. She made each book seem like it was the most exciting, magical, thrilling story ever. I had a shelf in my room full of teddy bears and dolls and different toys. My mother used these toys as the characters in each story. I particularly loved The Tale of Peter Rabbit and my mother used the rabbits to narrate the story. It was so much fun. I loved my bedtime stories.
Why are books and reading so important?
Books are the cornerstone of language and literacy development for young children and should be read daily to them.
Books and the relationships that children have with their families, peers, and care takers, is how children gather the information needed to make sense of the world around them.
Children need access to books and opportunities to look at them and read them over and over again.
Books and reading cultivate the child’s imagination and creates a bond between reader and child
Teaches life lessons (Little red riding hood – don’t talk to
Can help them go to sleep (lowers energy levels and relaxes them)
Creates habits and routines
**Children raised in homes that promote family literacy grow
up to be better readers and do better in school than children raised in homes
where literacy is not promoted (NCLD, 2015)
Family Literacy Ideas:
Read nightly before bed
Read high-quality books every day, including books that positively reflect children’s identity, home language, and culture
Read and reread stories with predictable text to children
Look at picture books together, sing songs, and recite poetry
Model reading behaviors
Make up stories to tell each other
Foster and encourage children’s interest in and enjoyment of reading and writing
Allow children to participate in activities that involve writing and reading (for example, cooking, making grocery lists)
Encourage discussions about the books and what they learned
Visit the library/book store regularly, or can search the internet for bed stories websites, for example: http://storyberries.com/
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