What is one thing that children’s books have that other books don’t?
Captivating illustrations on every page!
Children love experiencing a good book read to them by an adult. But, the fun factor is only one of many reasons to read to children; it’s also really, really good for them (and you)!
Reading to children, even before they can understand words, teaches them to associate books with love and affection. - Unknown
There are some themes, some subjects, too large for adult fiction; they can only be dealt with adequately in a children’s book. - Philip Pullman
Just a Few of the Many Advantages of Reading to Children of All Ages:
Bonding - I could write an entire article on this alone!
Increases brain function
Improves social and emotional skills
Supports an early love of books and reading
Teaches language structure and vocabulary
Teaches story structure
Teaches life lessons
Getting Books Into Little Hands: What is Pseudo-Reading and How Is It Beneficial?
Pseudo- reading is when a child that does not yet have the ability to read, picks up a book and begins telling a story by looking at the illustrations as if they are reading it. Do you remember doing this as a child? I sure do.
When little ones engage in this sort of pretend play, they are developing all sorts of important pre-reading skills. The benefits include:
Practicing the idea of reading fluency
Practicing their “reading voice” (distinct from a conversational tone)
Developing the use of complex language and practicing vocabulary
Developing a sense of the cadence and rhythm of reading/storytelling
Building storytelling skills
Exercising their creativity!
“But My Kid Can READ!” Why We Keep Reading Picture Books to Readers … Even Really Big Ones!
When children first learn to read, we’re excited to witness their development. Soon, they become independent readers with their own interests. So why do we keep reading to readers? Because …
Early readers can sound out simple texts, but they can learn so much more. Reading quality literature helps them continue to grow intellectually and gives them BIG IDEAS to think about and discuss.
Upper-elementary-aged children--and even middle and high school-aged kids--enjoy good stories, beautiful illustrations, and the opportunity to share their ideas about complex topics presented in simple ways that are the hallmark of quality children’s picture books.
The Wonder of Children’s Books for Adults
A children’s story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children’s story in the slightest. - C.S. Lewis
The book to read is not the one that thinks for you but the one which makes you think. - Harper Lee
There are certain stories that can only appear in children’s literature, creating a sense of wonder. But these stories have lessons for adults, too. How, you ask, can reading a children’s book benefit an adult? Well, let’s see..
Good children’s books can help reduce stress - Having a difficult day, read a children’s story!
Children’s stories often have happy endings and adorable characters.
The stories in quality children’s literature can help us step into another person’s experiences with as much depth as a good novel.
They contain positive messages.
All things become possible - Want to meet a cat with magical kitty-sword hands that can talk? Want to experience a world where dogs and caterpillars can speak to each other? Read a children’s story.
A children’s book with fabulous illustrations can evoke positive emotions.
Reacquaint yourself with wonder - What were some of your favorite children's books, characters or authors? Winnie the Pooh? Dr. Seuss? The Berenstain Bears? Harriett the Spy? Encyclopedia Brown? Charlotte’s Web? Revisit your old friends and see what you experience. Maybe nostalgia, fond childhood memories, or a sense of wonder.
I doubt that you could read a children’s story without smiling at least once; go ahead and try it! 😀
And… it takes less than 10 minutes of your time! Take that for a quick stress hack!
Stories Connect Us
The art of storytelling is good for people of all ages, and guess what? We LOVE to hear a good story! The podcast phenomenon is proof of that. When we are read to or are told stories, we are transformed outside of ourselves into a new and different place of wonder. Stories connect us, and allow us to make connections, develop empathy and compassion, look at things from different perspectives, and have rich experiences we may not have any other way, except for in the recesses of our imaginations. Stories take us there. And that, my friends, is magic!
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