I am writing this on a day when schools are closed due to the extreme cold weather. It is very easy to get a little bored when we are staying inside due to storms and cold weather. This is why February is perfect for I Love to Read Month. Reading is the best activity when everything outside is frozen! However, a few other benefits also come to mind.
Since mental health has become extremely important for us and our loved ones, reading can help people to experience a calm moment in their day. This sense of calm is harder and harder to find and it is important for kids (and adults) to know what calm actually feels like. A calm and safe experience, such as reading, provides a reference for kids when they are upset, so they know that calm is possible! In this way, reading helps us to “lend our calm” to our kids.
Kids also need a warm and nurturing connection with the adults in their lives. Reading encourages such a connection by sitting close and listening to engaging stories together. Kids can engage their imagination and creativity, hear the regulating voice of mom or dad as they read to them and enjoy some much needed learning language in the process.
I am sure there are many more benefits to reading, not to mention future success! However, the point is that we highlight reading in school because it is so important for all of us. I hope that you will find ways to instill a love of reading and the importance of reading in your children. Do it in ways that works best for them. Perhaps some of our ideas can help to get things started.
Enjoy a good book!