The Benefits of Getting Kids To Read
At the moment our kids are so used to playing on their screens, it’s really hard to encourage them to do anything else.
If you’ve been pulling your hair out in frustration. There are a few ways to get them off their screens and reading an old fashion book. There are also a ton of benefits.
I think it goes without saying. The more you practice something, the better you get, after all, practice makes perfect, right?
This isn’t just relevant to reading, it’s relevant in all aspects of our life. That’s why a small child has to stumble quite a few times before they master the art of walking.
The more your child reads and with little encouragement, they will start to get better with every page turn.
Exercises The Brain
There have been several studies that have studied the brain and they observed increased activity whenever it is stimulated. They have also been able to prove that reading also reduces stress.
Researchers at Emory University's Center for Neuropolicy highlighted the fact that reading causes positive changes to the brain. Not only whilst you are reading but also in the resting state too.
In essence, by constantly stimulating the brain you are producing new connections. Some call it exercising the brain.
With all the external distractions and cues that kids have around them today. There are many finding it really hard to sit down, be quiet and concentrate on something.
This is where reading really comes into its own. Unlike anything available to them, reading is a great way to teach your child to concentrate and focus on the story.
It doesn’t even matter if we are talking books, reading tablets or even a laptop/desktop. The fact that they are focused on one task and one alone helps children to concentrate unlike anything else you give them.
Teaches Them About The World
We all know that with the invention of TV and even the internet, the world of knowledge that is available to your children is vast.
They simply need to enter a search term into a search engine like Google and instantly find the answer they are looking for. However, there’s nothing like giving them a book on a specific topic and have them learn about the many different people, races, cultures, and countries.
It basically teaches them about the world around us.
If all children do is watch the same TV series, cartoons, films they will never get the chance to increase the vocabulary and learn new words and new meanings.
The more books they read and with more diversity allows them to absorb subconsciously new information, how to structure sentences and when and where to use words.
The great thing about this is, if they continue to do this, all of the other points we have talked about all start to come together and you will really start seeing seismic improvements on a scale you could only dream.
Not only will they be able to hold a conversation with their peers. They should find it really easy to have a conversation with children much older than them and even adults.
Not only does this help them now, but it also provides a solid foundation for them in the future.
Develops Their Imagination
The more we read, the better our vocabulary, concentration, and brain activity. These are all measurable. However, one thing that is often overlooked is increasing your child's imagination.
This is something as adults we seem to lose as we get older and is somewhat discouraged in our society.
The beauty of being a child is the permission they have to dream and imagine.
I think that’s why the Harry Potter books and subsequent films are so popular all around the world. It takes children’s mind into a completely different world not only exploring the mind of the author but also allows them to imagine their own stories and their own worlds.
Reading helps improve and cultivate their imagination likes films and television series can’t really do.
Helps With Empathy
Watching TV is a great stimulator, but nothing quite matches a book when you are teaching children to be emphatic. Going back to the previous point.
The more we can encourage them to imagine, the more we encourage them to put themselves in the shoes of certain characters.
How would they feel being placed in that situation?
How would they feel if it happened to them?
These are questions children will constantly ask themselves as they read more stories. The more they do this, the more empathy they will feel.
Spending Time Together
Depending on how busy your schedule is. Reading is a great way to spend time with your child.
Whether it is sitting in the same room, on the sofa reading or whether you are reading to them.
With our lives becoming busier, longer commutes and more work done at home, we are spending less and less time with our kids and they are noticing. Quality time spent reading together allows us to come together as families again.
Introducing children to books early on and getting them to concentrate and imagine endless possibilities with stories allows them to have fun and fight that boredom that so many feel with the sheer amount of distractions.
Reading can also be done anywhere. It doesn’t always have to be at home. Why not make a packed lunch and visit your local park.
A change in environment is always good for children. It is also another way to spend quality time with them that doesn’t involve some form of an electronic screen.