"The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you'll go." - Dr. Seuss, in I Can Read With My Eyes Shut!
Much has been said about the amazing benefits one gets from opening a book. But did you know that reading aloud to kids is as valuable to the young mind as letting them read on their own?
In fact, reading aloud to them from Day One is the first step to instilling a love for books and raising a reader! According to pediatrician Carmen Ramos-Bonoan, M.D., who is the national director of the Philippine Ambulatory Pediatric Association (PAPA), reading to your baby regularly teaches “your baby that sitting on your lap and being read to feels good and that books are enjoyable.”
Dr. Bonoan adds that babies love to listen to their parent's voice. As Dr. Liza Baker, executive editorial director of Scholastic, points out, “The sound of your voice, the lyrical quality of the younger [books] are poetic…It’s magical, even at 8 weeks old they focus momentarily, they’re closer to your heart.”
If you haven't started reading aloud yet (or have stopped reading with your big child because she has learned to read on her own—don't!), here are some tips to get you — and the family — into the habit:
1. Make books accessible. Before you can read books, make sure you even have books. Keep a stack in the room, bring some in the car, and have a few with you when you travel. The more they see them, the more they're likely to flip the pages open.