Reading can be fun for pre-readers, children learning to read, and kids who read well. Parents can use activities to make reading adventuresome as well as educational.
It is difficult to describe the awesome feelings of love and protection parents feel for their child. Because we want to do everything we can for our children, sometimes we think that means giving them every "THING" money can buy. However, that is not really what is "best" for our kids.
Parents who want to improve their child's chances of leading a successful, happy life will recognize the importance of spending quality time engaged in activities with their children. First among this list is spending quality time reading with your children. Research has shown that children who are read to as infants and preschoolers are more successful throughout school and have a greater chance of graduating from college.
The benefits of reading with your child -- and we emphasize "with" -- are seemingly endless. Obviously, their understanding and abilities increase, as well as their potential to learn. Reading WITH your child teaches them that it is important, but even more, reading interactively with your child tells them that they are important to you.
Children learn best by seeing examples. It is not enough to tell your child to read. Children need to see adults reading (the newspaper, instructions, recipes, books, magazines, etc.) in order to understand how important it is. They DO need to know that reading can get them the information they need, but they also need to know it can take them into far-off places, exciting adventures, and lands full of imagination and wonder.
Reading should be fun as well as instructional. When children have been read to throughout their life they quickly develop a love for it. When that happens, they become "free-agents" to discover whatever they will through the seemingly infinite amount of written information available today.
Sometimes it is difficult to find the time to do all of the things that are required of us. In our haste to do everything, reading with our children often gets pushed down the list so far that it eventually falls off. It is difficult for us to see the effects that reading with our children will have, especially because many of the results are too far in the future. Invest the time now, although it seems difficult to find, and you will be well rewarded as you watch your children grow.
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