The Benefits of Fun

If you’re a parent, perhaps you’re wondering why there’s so much hoopla about reading to your child. First the sad news. Literacy Partners posted on their website sobering 2011 statistics from ProLiteracy stating that 65% of all state and federal correctional inmates can be considered low literacy. But, here’s the good news. Study after study shows a correlation between children who are read to from an early age and academic success. Youngsters’ brains are like sponges, soaking up the basics of language and building the foundation for good reading skills. And what child wouldn’t enjoy snuggling onto a parent’s lap for a story?

Regular reading can occur at any time of the day, and it doesn’t have to be a book. Of course, books designed for a child’s age level are best, but a woman told me that on a busy afternoon she read the Wall Street Journal to her child. Years ago, my husband read a business book to our baby daughter. I think she even pointed at the pages, probably wondering where the pictures went. Along with the significant educational benefits of early literacy, it’s also free, fun, and a memory-maker. What tops that?

Have you ever slipped in non-traditional material during reading time?