There have been numerous studies that say if you read to your child, they will do better in school. However, I have found plenty of other benefits to read to my toddler. The added educational incentive is just icing on the cake. There are times when I struggle to understand a word she is saying. She is 2 and can say plenty of words, but as a parent it is hard to compare your child to other children. So, when I struggle to understand her, but can clearly understand a child the same age repeating everything I say, well it can be discouraging.
But, the point of this post isn’t about my toddler’s speech. It is about the awesome books we read together. When I say we read together, she is starting to pick up the words in the story. Can she read at the age of 2, gosh no. I am not crazy. She is remembering the story from the million times we have read it to her over the last 2 years of her life. But, she will be able to pick up the words faster because of this repetition.
So, here are some of our absolute favorite stories to read throughout the day (because books aren’t just for bedtime).
Cuddle bear is a great story about why hugs are important to give. It shows love and affection in appropriate ways and helps children learn that everyone needs love. PS. I may be a little bias, but I feel my toddler gives the best hugs!
Nancy Tillman is quickly becoming one of my favorite authors. Her stories are extremely powerful for any child or adult. The key theme for everyone of her books is that you are a valued and loved person on this planet. You can do amazing things and that no one is exactly like you. At the end of all of her books she states, “You are loved.” She is such a powerful author and the pictures are just majestic. I may be buying this series of books for every child I know and ones that have yet to be born.
Pete the Cat was a gift from our toddler’s Godparents. Being a teacher, she chose a book that her kids were really interested in reading. Let me tell you, it has been a huge hit at our house as well! We started reading this book right away and singing our song! At the time, we were learning how to put our shoes on and take them off. This book was perfect to sing while we were putting shoes on or picking out shoes to wear for the day. She now sings and dances while we read and really gets into the “Oh NO!”
No matter what books you enjoy reading with your child, the point is to read. Spend that quality one on one time with them and allow them to pick out the books. I should mention the little one has two bookshelves completely full of books and she will always find these books. So, this week, enjoy a few extra books. Read while you’re waiting at a restaurant, read as you’re making dinner, read outside (looks like the weather is finally breaking!) under a tree. Just read!