In this day and age of hyper-active kids and extremely busy, multitasking parents, it’s one of the hardest things to do, but spending quality time reading bedtime stories with your kids shouldn’t feel like a torturous punishment. The benefits of reading to children are too numerous to ignore.
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Reading Time and Short Stories
Reading to your son is one of the nicest and most pleasurable things you can do with him. This is a fantastic approach to getting to know someone and opening up to them in a casual, easy, and relaxed environment.
It’s all about an early introduction to reading as well as the ‘monkey see monkey do’ tactic. He mimics Dad and Mom, so if the parents are book readers, surely he will be too. But even if you don’t read, you should take the time to read to/with him. It’s fulfilling and the best part of a nightly/daily routine.
If your son is showing little interest in reading, there is hope. Sometimes moms and dads have to get sneaky, but you can still turn your little boy into a reader, even if he is reluctant about it. At this time, my son doesn’t read by himself, yes, he opens books and looks at the pictures, but he doesn’t read. We read to him, that’s our job for now.
The early-night trick
One of my favorite strategies for encouraging my son to read is one I hope he won’t discover until he has children of his own. Two words… Early Bedtime. Two more words…Bedtime stories! Especially with Oxford Reading Tree story book series. Great purchase!
You might be wondering how will he get enough sleep if you encourage your kid to read more. Here’s the trick… Set his bedtime for, at least 25 minutes, before you want the lights to be turned off.
Here is what I do before going to bed. My son uses the restroom and brushes his teeth. I then read a book of his choosing, sometimes two, depending on the length. All of this is completed before his scheduled bedtime. Bam! Done! Easy peasy…
He always wants at least a book read to him unless he is extremely exhausted from a good time at Taekwondo class, or simply tired. I never have to bribe him or force him into enjoying a story with Daddy, never(knock on wood).
We let him enjoy a ‘late’ evening with us at times, and he has come to cherish the opportunity for a “late” night, on a Friday or Saturday. But, on a school night, he’s in bed at 745 p.m. and he’s sleeping by 830 p.m., or even earlier. That’s our routine and it works wonders for all three of us.
Read the book before you see the movie
This is a standard in our home. We won’t go see any movie until we’ve read the book. I’ve done this on a few occasions with Pixar’s Inside Out and a few more. As my son doesn’t read yet, it’s up to me or my wife to read to him about these movies before seeing them or sometimes after watching them at the cinema. Libraries are wonderful and underused resources in our modern society.
Go and check out the children’s book section at your local library, you’ll find treasures upon treasures that your son and yourself will love.
MORE Benefits of ‘Story Time’
There are a number of reasons why you should read to your son on a regular basis and foster a future love of books. If you are already reading to him daily then these reasons should strengthen your resolve and if you are not regularly reading to your son they should challenge you to do so:
- A well-chosen story engages and challenges your son’s mind. Your son can discover cultures and events outside of his current context through books, in addition to reliving things in real-world situations.
- Reading aloud gives a youngster a goal for their literacy efforts and exemplifies what good reading sounds like. Your youngster will require role models to imitate as they learn to read. Why don’t you become that role model?
- Reading aloud to your son from different books helps him learn vocabulary, sentence structure, pronunciation, and overall language development. Your boy will be able to learn to read more easily and with more success if he has a greater understanding of words and language.
- Reading to him encourages him to make the connection between meaning and print. Simply by being exposed to many words repeatedly, children pick up on many words. It is necessary to put the words in context in addition to merely providing them.
- Reading shows how a book functions. For example, we read a page from top to bottom and a line from left to right when reading a book. We who have read books for a long time take these guidelines for granted, but young ones must learn them.
- Your son’s imagination and creativity are stimulated by a well-written narrative, which might encourage his own creative endeavors and play. Have you ever gotten lost in a good book? Your son can do the same while you are reading to him.
- Reading a range of age-appropriate books teaches children how narrative and story structure function, which is beneficial for literacy and social interaction. People employ storytelling and narrative in their interpersonal and professional relationships, and those who are most adept at these techniques are frequently the most successful, for good reason. Give your son that benefit.
- Making literacy a priority in your life will show your son how important it is, encouraging him to do the same in his life. Why would your son think reading is significant if he never sees you do it?
- Having your prince sit on your lap or cuddle up next to you while you read to him encourages physical interaction. It presents an additional chance to bond.
- Especially when it is the voice of a loved one, listening to a father’s voice may be quite calming. It can provide comfort and aid in reducing stress or anxiety in children. Like adults, kids experience a lot of daily stress. You could discover that reading to your child not only eases their tension but also yours.
- .When you read to your son, he will learn the importance of reading, therefore reading will become important to him.
- The more your son hears sounds, the better he will process these sounds into new words. When a child is preschool/kindergarten age the listening word starts to become the written word.
- Reading has a calming effect on a restless or fussy baby. Who doesn’t want an easy way to calm a fussy baby?
- Reading is a wonderful bedtime routine. Studies have shown that a child will thrive in an atmosphere in which routines are present. And oh boy, I sure love my routines at home.
- Reading will foster your son’s ability to listen and pay attention. With all the problems we hear about concerning attention span, this is a great way to avoid that.
- Reading to a young boy will teach him the correct way to hold a book and turn the pages.
- Teachers will thank you.
- When your son is reading a storybook, he will be able to recognize his name in print at an early age.
- Reading enhances emotional intelligence, helping your child understand and empathize with different characters’ feelings and experiences.
- Exposure to diverse stories and poems promotes tolerance and acceptance of different cultures, races, and lifestyles.
- Regular reading sessions create a sense of routine and security, making your child feel safe and nurtured.
- It boosts your child’s knowledge about the world, introducing them to various topics and concepts they might not encounter otherwise.
- Reading fosters critical thinking as children analyze plots, fictional characters, and motives, encouraging them to ask questions and explore ideas.
- Reading sparks curiosity and encourages your child to ask questions, driving their desire to learn and explore the world further.
- Shared reading experiences create lasting memories, strengthening the bond between you and your child and providing a foundation for positive relationships.
- Exposure to a variety of genres and writing styles helps your child develop their preferences and interests, paving the way for a lifelong love of reading.
Reading to your boy should be a regular part of your nightly routine, but you should also take advantage of unplanned occasions to read. In addition to strengthening your bond with your boy and creating enduring memories, these experiences will also benefit them throughout their entire lives.
A Whole New World
As a father, you have many important priorities when it comes to your boy. You need to keep your son safe, healthy, and loved. In today’s hectic world, we often spend so much time engaged in those priorities we forget another important area — mental stimulation-NO NOT THE SMARTPHONE KIND...No screen time here…
As dads, we need to engage our children’s minds as well as their bodies for them to grow and learn. One of the best ways to achieve this goal is through good reading habits.
I’m an avid reader and a writer with books on Amazon. Having a son gave me a new sense of reading, for him. I’ve done that since we brought him home from the hospital. Yes, I was reading to him then. I was actually reading to him while he was in the womb.
I remember going to the library to get new books and the librarian asked how old was my baby, I simply replied: “he’s coming in a few months, he’s not born yet”. Real story. Really important too. Now, my son is almost 6 and he needs his bedtime books now, we can’t imagine an evening without them.
Whether in English, Korean, or French, books are ALWAYS part of our nightly routine, it’s just as important as brushing his teeth before ‘sleepiez.’ It should also be part of your routine…what are you waiting for it’s the best way to spend quality time with your young kids. Have a great time…They are only young once.
Stir up your child’s imagination with Dr.Seuss. He has a variety of books for young children, older children, and reluctant readers. He has several children’s books that are well-known but he has several great books that aren’t. Check them out in my article.
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