Sharing Stories 1 – BOOKS
For many parents, curling up with a book for a bedtime story with their child is a daily ritual. For others, it is the perfect time to spend time with their children after a busy day, and for some, it is something they should do but are not entirely sure why.
Discover these benefits of bedtime stories for kids.
Sharpen their brains
Research shows that one of the greatest benefit of interacting with children, including reading to them stories, is that children learn a great deal of things- from improved logic skills to lowering their stress levels. Bedtime stories rewire the brain of a child and quicken their mastery of language. Their vocabulary repertoire is expanded and their listening and oral communication skills enhanced.
Enhance Creativity and Stimulate Imagination
If you are a good storyteller, then you can teleport your child to a different realm – from reality to fantasy for the child to learn the difference between these two. This will enhance and stimulate his imagination.
- Use your voice – time, volume, sounds
- Use your facial expressions
- Use your body
Children will learn to experience different emotions while empathising with the characters of the story. The common emotions of sadness, happiness and anger may be encountered and he will learn to control these in real life.
There are so many benefits of sharing stories through books
Books present information in clear, concise and consistent manner with accurate and structured information on what is happening. This means that books help to
- Describe social cues
- Improve social skills and prepare children for new social situations
- Break down challenging social situations into steps
- Help children to understand rules and routines, becoming familiar with new situations
- Breaks down pretend play activity to outline the steps
There is nothing more important than connecting with a child, and sharing stories is one of the easiest ways to do it.
Low cost or free
- Borrow from friends or library
- Pick them up in charity shops and car boot sale
- Hand down through siblings and family
- Pop in your bag and off you go
- Ready to pull out to pass the time waiting for appointments,
- Support or distract when going through a difficult time such as treatments and procedures,
- Perfect for travelling, journeys can be tiring and boring – get lost in a story and while away the time in the imagined world of the Gruffalo or Flat Stanley!
- They come in many shapes, styles (paper/ hard back/ board book), sizes, languages, genre
- Suitable for every age and stage of development. There really is something for everyone
- Point of reference – we often carry books about trees on Autumn walks to help identify trees, leaves and seeds. It’s reported that the average 4 year old will ask between 400-700 questions per day – I like to have a book on hand to find some answers!
- Educational – we follow up interesting and important events and activities by sharing books. For my 2yr old, books about an asthmatic teddy who uses inhalers helps him process and understand his own recent hospital admission.
- Extends and consolidates language acquisition and understanding.
What IMPACT can sharing stories have?
Here’s a little snippet of a personal experience where sharing stories has had a huge IMPACT on the emotional wellbeing of my youngest.
There aren’t many 2yr old who can say ‘stethescope’ and know what it means. Because my child has had a lot of EXPERIENCE of a stethoscope in his life, which he finds distressing; by sharing books that REPRESENT stethoscopes in caricature, pictorally and in text, with me describing what was happening in the book, he was able to CONSOLIDATE his KNOWLEDGE, process his experiences better, which normalised them, giving him a feeling of security. So that his next real life experience of a stethescope will be better because he now has CONTEXT to draw upon. He is able to build resilience from the adverse and traumatic experiences he has had.
All that from sharing a book! Pretty special really!
Create a cosy bubble with your little one and get lost in sharing a book today x