Why is reading so important?
Studies show that reading for pleasure makes a big difference to children’s educational performance. Here’s how you can get your child off to a great start.
Evidence suggests that children who read for enjoyment every day not only perform better in reading tests than those who don’t, but also develop a broader vocabulary, increased general knowledge and a better understanding of other cultures.
In fact, reading for pleasure is more likely to determine whether a child does well at school than their social or economic background.
You can make a huge difference! Parents are the most important educators in a child’s life – even more important than their teachers – and it’s never too early to start reading together.
Even before they're born, babies learn to recognise their parents' voices. Reading to your baby from birth, even for just a few minutes a day, gives them the comfort of hearing your voice and increases their exposure to language.
Reading and sharing stories can:
Sharing stories with your child doesn’t mean you have to read from the book.
Just by looking at books with your child and talking about them, you can be a great storyteller and a good model for using language and books. Your child will learn by watching you hold a book the right way and seeing how you move through the book by gently turning the pages.
Reading stories with children has benefits for grown-ups too. The special time you spend reading together promotes bonding and helps to build your relationship with your child.