10 Reasons You Should Read Aloud to Your Kids As Much As You Can

Must read out loud

Whether it’s at home or in the classroom, we’re expected to read aloud to our kids. 

Why do we do it? When they’re young, they’ll just forget anyways, right?

While they may or may not forget the stories we read, there are several reasons that reading to kids proves to be a simple action that yields valuable, long-term results.

Looking for book ideas? Check out our favorite picks for every grade level!

Here are 10 reasons you should read aloud to your kids:

1. Modeling Positive Behavior

At the most basic level, the act of reading gives kids permission to read themselves. Kids respond to our actions more than our commands; therefore, reading in front of kids models the magic of a story. If we enjoy reading, they are more likely to enjoy it, too.

2. Bonding

Just like conversation between two people can be a relationship-building activity, reading aloud can be, too. Kids will learn the highs and lows of your voice and become accustomed to hearing it. If there’s one sure-fire method to creating a relaxed and comfortable environment, it’s through theatrically reading a story.

3. Vocabulary building

Children are more likely to remember the meaning of words in the context of a sentence rather than in a stand-alone definition. What better way to add context to a word than in a story? Reading aloud to kids organically builds vocabulary. According to this study, context provides the majority of vocabulary building in kids. It’s no surprise that vocabulary tests are evolving to test more than a child’s knowledge of the definition. Reading aloud can absolutely be a way to introduce or reassess vocabulary retention.

4. Listening 

Kids can have short attention spans, made even shorter when they are listening to something they don’t enjoy. Reading aloud can lay a foundation for future listening by reaching them where they are and piquing their interest.

5. Difficult issues

It can be extremely challenging to talk about difficult issues such as racism or discrimination, but reading about such issues through a character’s eyes can make things easier. Reading aloud about tough issues we face can be thought-provoking without being preachy. 

6. Personal interests

When kids listen to a story aloud, they may just develop an interest in the story and want to read about it further. Reading aloud is also a way that kids can share their own interests. Reading aloud as an adult is undoubtedly influential, and having kids read aloud can be equally inspiring to other kids. 

7. Desire for Learning

When a passion for a topic is shared, there’s a good chance that it will create a desire for learning in the listeners. This is the space where creativity blooms and kids want to know more. Reading aloud not only triggers that curiosity, but it can also foster it through the creative process.

8. Introduce Ideas

Reading aloud can be a great way to lead into a new unit in the classroom. It can be an excellent avenue to open a discussion about a topic at home. Books are a tool that may be utilized to get the wheels turning and ideas brewing. Instead of blatantly telling a child how to think or feel, books allow them to hear a story, information, or an opinion on an idea. That way, we are invited them to process their thoughts on a subject rather than commanding them how to think about it.

9. Comprehension

The ability to understand a complete story is often underestimated in today’s educational world; hearing stories read aloud gives children the freedom to dream or decide their feelings toward something. In wanting to do these things, they must first comprehend. The story gives them the incentive to comprehend.

10. Because they love it

Read aloud to your kids because they love it. Kids love being read to. Kids love to feel important enough that someone would take the time to really do something for them. They love it. If for no other reason, read to your kids because you can make their day better by doing so.

10 reasons to read aloud to your kids

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Whitney Ballard is a writer and teacher from small town Alabama. She owns the Trains and Tantrums blog, https://trainsandtantrums.blog/. Whitney went from becoming a mom at sixteen to holding a Master’s degree in Education; she writes about her journey, along with daily life, through a Christian lens on her blog. When she’s not writing, you’ll find her in the backyard with her husband, two boys, and two dogs.

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