Just 20 minutes a day reading aloud with young children strengthens relationships, encourages listening and language skills, promotes attention and curiosity, and establishes a strong reading foundation. These skills are essential for success in school and in life.
It takes hundreds of hours of “lap time” for a child to acquire the pre-literacy skills necessary for learning to read early and well. From birth to age five, the pleasant activity of listening to and talking about stories trains a child’s brain, ears, and eyes for eventual success in learning to read.
“The early years set the stage for later learning…the single most important activity for building the knowledge required for eventual success in reading is reading aloud to children.”
Once a child begins to read, it is essential to continue reading aloud together. Like other skills, reading is mastered over time, with lots of practice, and with the help of another person. The routine of sharing books together creates lifelong readers.
The magic of this process is the simplicity of action. Any adult can do it, in just about any place, with little or no expense. It doesn’t matter what language is spoken. Non-reading parents can make up stories to go with the illustrations. The essential elements are scheduled time with books and a positive attitude!
Make reading together the most important – and happiest – 20 minutes of your day!
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