Parents can strengthen their family, community, and nation by reading at least one book to their children every day. Children are blessed if their parents or caregivers read to them every day with bigger vocabulary and greater readiness to read.
A study out of Ohio State University shows that there is a word gap between children who are read to and those who do not have this privilege. If a child has one book read to them every day, they “hear about 290,000 more words by age 5 than those who don’t regularly read books with a parent or caregiver.” Apparently, the number of books read each day to the child makes a difference also. “Young children whose parents read to them five books a day enter kindergarten having heard about 1.4 million more words than kids who were never read to.”
“Kids who hear more vocabulary words are going to be better prepared to see those words in print when they enter school,” said [Jessica] Logan, a member of Ohio State’s Crane Center for Early Childhood Research and Policy.
“They are likely to pick up reading skills more quickly and easily.”
The study seems to show that parents can prepare their children to be successful in school simply by reading to them each day. I remember sitting with my children surrounding me and one on my lap as we read books each evening. Each child had the opportunity to choose one book. I read books to them through elementary years and even longer. One daughter, home from college for the summer, asked me to read to the family while we were sitting around a camp fire somewhere in the Alaska wilderness. The results of this study bring joy to this mother’s heart because it assures that I did some things right as an imperfect parent.
Spending quality time together strengthens family relationships. Reading good books to children is quality that brings joy to all participants. Families, communities, and nations can grow stronger by the joyful experience of reading books together.