We all read to our children...I'll take a step back and say we SHOULD all read to our children. To the majority of us it's natural to have a baby/small child in our arms and a book in the other. And we read to them.

It's a huge part of my job. I read to babies...I read to toddlers....I read to preschoolers...I read to school-age children. In fact I'll read to anyone and everyone. There are several library users who have limited sight and like help choosing their audio books. I enjoy reading the blurb out loud....most times putting on voices as I go along. (who doesn't?)

And by now we all know how good....important.....VITAL it is to read to children.

Reading to babies and toddlers comes naturally to us...but we tend to get to an age when we stop reading to our children.

Usually this is when they are able to read by themselves. When they can enjoy a book alone.

But why do we stop reading out loud to them?

At work we read to children all the time...and we don't stop just because they can read.

There is nothing like having a class full of children waiting eagerly, and impatiently, for the next instalment in a novel. (every teacher will be nodding their head in agreement). Does Harry escape? Will the Snow Queen win? What is the secret of the haunted house?

To be reading a story and have every child focused is a powerful moment. You know that the magic of words is alive...that their imagination is caught and they must know what happens next.

Little Miss loves stories. She loves being read to and it is a big part of our nightly routine when she stays (as well as a bubble bath with dinosaurs and rubber ducks). But when we had her older brother stay one night....I made the assumption that he wouldn't want to be read to.

When it was bedtime, he sat on the end of her bed as I read to her and then when I said goodnight to him, he asked if I could read a chapter of his book.

Gladly I accepted. The book was Captain America....and I began to read. He listened then he asked questions....questions about the era the story was set in. What did this word mean? Didn't they have telephones in cars? Do I think the scientist could be the villain? He then asked for me to read another chapter...and another.

I read over four chapters until he fell asleep.

It is something so easy to do. Don't assume that because a child can read, they don't want to be read to.

It offers yet another chance to create a bond. Another chance to draw them into the magic that is books.



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