According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, establishing routine story time with your baby can help them develop the vocabulary, literacy and cognitive abilities needed to be successful in school.
It is reported that one in three American children do not have the language skills needed to learn to read by the time they start kindergarten. Additionally, children from low-income families tend to have less vocabulary skills by the age of three than children from higher-income families.
The AAP recommends establishing a story time routine as early as newborn age. During the newborn stage, a story time routine can help strengthen the parent-baby bond through cuddling and letting them hear your voice as you read aloud.
As your baby matures, other activities such as singing, rhyming and playing can also promote literacy development. Choosing books that are brightly colored, have different textures or include sound will encourage your baby to play with them. Cardboard books and cloth books are great ways to let baby play with the books without the worry of destroying them. Later on, let your toddler pick the book for story time and take turns reading together.
Don’t be surprised if your pediatrician asks about your story time routine at your baby’s next check-up. Story time is a great way to nurture your child’s learning and a fun way to spend time as a family.