10 Reasons Why Reading is Important


Reading books and stories with your child is important for their development.   There are a variety of different ways to read a book now.  You can read “real” books, board books, digital books, magazines, picture books, etc.  We don’t know what the world will look like in 5 or 10 years, but what we do know is that reading is important and that reading a “real” book is different than reading an electronic book.

Real books feel and look different.  They have texture and substance. You can feel and smell the pages.  A lot of children books have beautiful pictures to engage your child.  These books have textures and pop-up pictures that you can see and touch – which enrich the story and increase your child’s understanding and vocabulary skills.  Children learn about following directions and when and how to turn the pages.  They learn about the cover of books and “the end” of the story.   Children learn to use their imagination while hearing and reading these stories.  As they get older, children learn how to mark their favorite pages or make notes in the margin.  They learn how to take care of their books.  Children learn that snuggling up with mom and dad for story time is a great bonding experience full of love and adventure.

Digital books feel and look different.  There are a variety of devices capable of displaying digital books – smart phones, tablets, e-readers, etc.   One of the benefits of these devices is that they offer a different learning experience.  We all know that children learn in different ways.  If your child is not interested in “real” books, they might be very interested in digital books.  These devices offer a different type of visual stimulation and learning.  Children are still learning.  They’re still following directions and building their vocabulary skills and some devices even take the story to the next level.  A lot of details can be expanded on using the digital books, but it might be hard for the child to snuggle with the device and mom and dad – especially if they want to use it independently.

Regardless of the type of book you use, reading is important because it opens up a world of opportunities.  Stories are full of excitement and adventure.  These stories build on your child’s imagination and promote language development and literacy skills.  Reading to your child every day and having them see you reading are beneficial because:

  1. Children learn to love books by watching their parents read
  2. Reading aloud is fun for children
  3. Reading aloud teaches children a great deal about words and language
  4. Reading allows children to learn about and pursue their personal interests and passions
  5. Hearing stories about other children helps develop a sense of empathy
  6. Reading exposes children to a variety of cultures and places
  7. Books create connections between everyday situations (such as going to the dentist)
  8. Books encourage pretend play
  9. Reading teaches children about the world around them
  10. Reading together creates a special bond between parents and their children

So, grab a book and your child and enjoy some time together.

Now It’s Your Turn:  Do you have a preference for “real” books or digital ones?   What’s your child’s favorite book?