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The best way to interest a child in books is to read to him or her. And it’s never too soon to start.
You can read to very young babies, who enjoy the closeness of a parent along with the visual stimulation of a picture book. As children get older, reading a book with mom or dad creates a quiet one-on-one time. The child’s attention span will lengthen as they get older and the books become longer and more involved.
Reading aloud to a child has many benefits, such creating a calming atmosphere that allows for bonding. You’ll expose the child to language, and help build his or her imagination. The child will also learn about relationships that may be different from your family life.
Even if your child is capable of reading on their own, reading aloud with him or her is a way to share the books you loved as a child. Try taking turns reading every other chapter.
Best of all, the quiet time spent sharing a book creates an atmosphere that is ideal for communicating with your child. Perhaps something in the book will trigger feelings or a memory that he or she will want to share with you, or even something from your past that will interest your child.
Taking time out to read a book to your child is a wonderful way to create a quiet, intimate space, free from the overstimulation of today’s electronic age.