As parents, we want to raise our children to be the best version of themselves. We want them to be smart, empathetic, and successful in life. And I know a lot of us are all trying to figure out the right way to accomplish that. Days can be full of repeating yourself over and over to get your child to complete a routine task. I mean when my son washes his hands after using the bathroom, Queen’s iconic song “We Are The Champions” plays in my head. I as a parent have succeeded at that moment
There is one habit that has been scientifically proven to lay the foundation for raising a smart and successful child. The best part is it only takes 15 minutes a day, and you don’t have to put on a bra and leave your house to do it. All you have to do is read to your child for 15 minutes a day. Even if they know how to read, read aloud to your child.
There Is Not Enough Time In The Day.
But when? I get it. We are busy people with a never-ending to-do list. There is dinner to be made, laundry to be folded and a Netflix binge that is long overdue. Weekly Swim lessons, a dentist appointment, and nightly homework. Which is why reading aloud to our child is a low priority for many. There is no due date with reading out loud to our kids so we just keep pushing it off for another day. A 2018 survey of American families, showed that only 30 percent of parents reported reading aloud to their children for at least 15 minutes a day. I was shocked to learn that statistic. That’s not even close to half!
With access to libraries, books stores, and school reading programs, the disconnect comes down to us as parents not making it a part of our daily routine. Too harsh? Did that sting a little? It hurt my heart to write it, but we need to admit this so we can do better. I’m in the trenches with you so know there is no judgment.
Want to know how you can raise a reader? Watch my quick how to here
Why Should I Take The Time To Read Aloud To My Kid?
There are many benefits to reading with your child. I am going to focus on the four I believe to be the most important.
- You set your child up to be a life long reader. Reading is the foundation for learning — kids who struggle with reading and comprehension struggle in school. It’s a fact. Reading aloud daily to your child is the best gift you can give them, and its rewards will carry out through their life. The return on the investment is priceless.
- Your child will have a more extensive vocabulary. Understanding a wider variety of words is going to help your child follow instructions given to them. This is especially true for kids in Kindergarten through Third grade. Many instructions given during this period is oral. So recognizing and comprehending what is being asked of them is critical in them being successful.
- You build a stronger bond with your child. Kids love having your undivided attention, and they know with reading they will get that. Reading allows us to pause and bond with our child physically and emotionally. There is a closeness in reading a book together that can’t be duplicated in our busy lives. Creating a close bond with your child is going to help with them listening and trusting you more. What parent doesn’t want that? So know that when kids pull the “can you read one more”? This factor may have a lot to do with that. It’s a good thing!
- You instill and teach understanding to your child. When you read fiction or biographies your child is learning about different cultures and types of people. People that may have different beliefs and challenges than them. It gives kids a different perspective and allows them to put themselves in someones else’s shoes. Teaching empathy to a child helps grow their compassion for others and will help them be a good friend. We all need a good friend in our life.
Don’t let the window of opportunity close
Fifteen minutes every day is all it takes for us, to lay the foundation for our child to be successful and live their best life. So the next time you think you don’t have the time remember this. The laundry can wait, and the dishes will still be there. But your child will only fit in your lap and be living under your roof for so long. Invest in reading aloud to your child daily for 15 minutes.