Today is National Read a Book Day, and whether you’ve found a book you haven’t read yet or you just want to choose an old favourite from your shelf, today is a good day to be inspired to read.
There are lots of benefits to reading with children and these start from an early age. I’ve always loved books and one of my favourite memories as a child is the bedtime story my parents would read to me every day.
Reading not only benefits memory and concentration but can also reduce stress. Sharing stories with children is a great way to develop their understanding and use of language in an enjoyable way. The more words a child knows, the more words they are able to use in conversation and then later in their written work.
From young children looking at picture books and hearing their parents name what they can see, to older children answering questions about what has happened in the story and predicting what might happen next; there are endless opportunities to develop speech and language skills with books.
Before children learn to read, they benefit from hearing lots of stories and rhymes. This helps to get them interested in stories as well as introduces them to a wide range of vocabulary. My favourite book as a child was ‘We’re going on a Bear Hunt’ and I’ve enjoyed this many times with the children I’ve worked with. The repetition and use of actions is really appealing to children and makes for a great activity for all the family or a nursery class.
I also like to use books during my therapy sessions as they are so versatile. Whether we are working on early language and attention and listening (lift the flap such as ‘Where’s Spot?’), targeting rhyme, speech sounds or vocabulary, there’s always a book that can be used. I love Julia Donaldson books when working on rhyme and ‘You Choose’ is one of my favourites for targeting a wide range of areas, and it can be a different story every time!
The Elklan Let’s Talk with Under 5’s course covers a range of topics to help you to support your child’s speech and language development. One of the topics covered is using shared stories to help with language development. I am delivering this course online from Monday 5th October (1-3pm) and I’m currently offering an Early Bird Discount of 15% if booked before 11th September. Further details can be found on my Facebook event here. If you would like any more information or would like to discuss this further, please do not hesitate to get in touch.
Which book will your child choose to read today? Once you’ve read with your child, why not settle down with a book of your own – there’s nothing quite like getting lost in a story!