Reading to your kids is great but here’s why you’re doing it all wrong:

Reading-to-your-kids

When reading to your kids, call attention to the words. It helps build their reading skills.

Parents are encouraged to read to their children, and they frequently engage in shared book reading on the belief that the experience will foster their children’s literacy development. In this article, the authors draw on a body of published studies to argue that shared book reading often does not lead to the benefits expected of it. The studies show that during parent-child shared reading, the adults typically do not draw the children’s attention to features of the print and the children most often will attend to the illustrations and not to the print. As a consequence, shared book reading often does not advance children’s early literacy development. However, the authors point to research showing that when shared book reading is enriched with explicit attention to the development of children’s reading skills and strategies, then shared book reading is an effective vehicle for promoting the early literacy ability even of disadvantaged children. 

Source: “Unlocking the door: Is parents’ reading to children the key to early literacy development?” from Phillips, Linda M.; Norris, Stephen P.; Anderson, Jim Canadian Psychology/Psychologie canadienne, Vol 49(2), May 2008, 82-88. 

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