8 Reasons to Read to Very Young Children

This is a guest blog post by our Youth Services Manager, Farouqua Abuzeit. 

  1. Picture Books have a rich vocabulary, and often include language that your child might not hear in everyday conversation. Reading to your child introduces new vocabulary in context.
  2. Reading a book together is an important moment of connection between a child and a caring grownup. Use your reading time to cuddle up close!
  3. Most brain development happens in the first five years of life. Reading to your child helps build a stronger brain.
  4. As your child interacts with books—turning the pages, watching you point to the words and pictures, seeing how (in English) we read from left to right—they learn how books physically work. This is a crucial first step in preparing them to read independently.
  5. Many Picture Book texts are rich in rhyme and rhythm. When children hear these books read aloud, they develop an awareness of sound patterns that will help them sound out words when they learn to read on their own.
  6. It’s never too early to develop visual literacy skills. As you and your child talk about what you see in books’ illustrations, your child learns to “read” the pictures, using books’ art to provide clues to the story.
  7. As you and your child enjoy reading together, your child will learn to love reading—a feeling that can last for life!
  8. Reading together builds an association between reading and comfort. When you read together often, even young children can start to use “reading” or looking at books as a form of self-soothing.