Reading at Bedtime!

Dr. Natalie Rocke Henderson
Wishing Star Associate

One of the most effective strategies for promoting literacy development involves reading to children.  This starts with reading to even the very young child and continuing to read to your child well into late childhood. Armed with this information, my husband and I have always read to our children and it is an integral part of our bedtime routine.  In fact, I think we would have a mutiny on our hands if we did not read our kids a story at bedtime! 

Of course, the most exciting skill to emerge in the primary grades is learning to read.  Unfortunately, at about this time, in a well-intentioned effort to build reading skills many parents replace reading to their child at bedtime with having their child read to them.  Certainly, children will benefit from practicing their reading with a parent.  However, I like to encourage parents to do this type of “practice” outside of the bedtime routine.  Instead, it may be helpful to think of reading to your child at bedtime as a time to connect with and soothe your child, something even the older child needs and get them ready for sleep.  Not only are you encouraging literacy, you will be strengthening your relationship with your child.

This blog posting is not a form of psychological counselling, advice, therapy, or assessment and should not be used as such by any individual. This blog posting is provided only as an article intended to encourage thought and discourse. For specific psychology related services, please contact an appropriate healthcare provider.