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article imageReading To Your Children Improves Their Literacy Skills

By Bob Ewing     May 13, 2008 in World
Young children whose parents read aloud to them have better language and literacy skills when they go to school, according to a review published online ahead of print in the Archives of Disease in Childhood.
If you read out loud to your children they will develop better language and literacy skills, according to a review published online ahead of print in the Archives of Disease in Childhood.
In addition, children who have been read to are more likely to develop a love of reading and this many be even more important than the head start in language and literacy.
Furthermore, the advantages that are gained remain with, for example, children who start out as poor readers in their first year of school likely to remain so.
When the person reading to the child describes the pictures in the book, and explains the meaning of the story and encouraging the child to talk about what has been read to them and to ask questions can improve their understanding of the world and their social skills.
The review brings together a wide range of published research on the benefits of reading aloud to children. It includes evidence that middle class parents are more likely to read to their children than poorer families.
The style of reading has more impact on children’s early language and literacy development than the frequency of reading aloud. Middle class parents tend to use a more interactive style, making connections to the child’s own experience or real world, explaining new words and the motivations of the characters, while working class parents tend to focus more on labeling and describing pictures.
The different reading styles can impact on children’s development of language and literacy-related skills.
The Reach Out and Read programme in Boston provides books and advice to the parents about the importance of reading aloud and has improved the language skills of children in low income families by increasing the proportion of parents reading to their children.
The parents who have been given books were four times more likely to say they had looked at books with their children or that looking at books was one of their child’s favourite activities, and twice as likely to read aloud to their children at least three times a week.
Click here to view the paper in full as a pdf file.:
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