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The Benefits of Reading To Your Child

by Rhonda Gales

To prepare your child for academic success, expose them to books early. Studies have shown that reading is one of the keys to academic success. My daughter loved for me to read aloud when she was a child, especially at bedtime. She loved Strawberry Shortcake, The Berenstain Bears, and any classic bedtime story. As she got older her interest would change, but she continued to read for hours. At age 27 she still loves to read. She follows Oprah's bookclub and she is a member of Walden's Books as well. One of my fondest memories will be our book fair excursions. We would plan a day where I would meet her at college and we would spend hours at the local book fair. Later we would discuss our finds as well as the latest happenings on campus over dinner. I do believe that our mutual love for books helped to create a strong mother - daugher bond.

My daughter was an honor student, a member of Who's Who in America, and a member of the Spanish Honor Society. I believe that her early exposure to books helped her to excel in her academics. Start reading to your child at an early age. It's never too soon.

Benefits of Reading to Your Child:

·Reading together creates a bond.
·Reading helps to build a child's vocabulary. If there was a word that my daugther didn't understand she would ask what the word meant. It's a perfect opportunity to expose them to the dictionary and read the definition to them.
·Your child will learn to follow a story from beginning to end. (You won't be able to fool them if you try to skip pages. If it's one of their favorite stories, they will know it by heart).
·Your child will have an appreciation for writing as well. My daughter decided to create her own stories. She would sit for hours writing, drawing pictures, and later reading her stories to me.
·Strong academics.

Reading Tips:

·Start reading to your child as early as 6 months. Children this age will usually want to eat their books. Vinyl books would be appropriate for this age group.
·Select reading material that interest your child and is appropriate to his/her age group. Toddlers love bright colors and books that are simple (without a lot of illustrations). Board books are perfect.
·Use different voices and pitches (vary your tone) when you read. Young children usually prefer to hear the same story over and over.
·Purchase a personalized book for your child. They love reading about themselves.
·PBS has great programs where they focus on words, spelling, and their meaning. Check out you TV Guide for timeslots and programs.
·Have your child turn the page when you're reading. This gets them involved.
·Allow your child to ask questions, and be sure to ask your child questions about the story.
·Introduce them to book stores early, and allow your child to select books from his or her age group.
·Take them to the local library for story hour. Be sure to get them a library card.
·Set an example. If your child sees you reading, they will follow.
·Don't substitute books on tape. The true bonding experience and benefits come from you taking the time to read to your child.

About the Author:
Rhonda is the mother of a beautiful daughter and owner of an on-line business, Rhonda's Fabric Gift Baskets. She resides in the eastern panhandle of West Virginia, which is approximately 1 hour from the Washington, DC area. For unique baby gifts, visit Rhonda at They feature diaper cakes, onesies, hand-crocheted dresses, sweaters, and christening gowns for infants. Gift baskets for all occasions! Be sure to visit Rhonda's blog, Mother 2 Mother, at

If you have any educational articles, homeschooling techniques, activities for elementary aged children, parenting resources, hobbies/crafts, money-saving ideas, or family time activities, please submit them and we will be posting them soon! We would love to hear from you!

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