We all know how important it is to develop early literacy skills in children. Studies have shown that frequent readers and kids who read for pleasure do better in school and in life. Getting your child to love reading at an early age gives them a huge jump start on success. Reading builds so many important skills we really can’t afford for our kids not to do it. The problem is, many kids over school breaks “take time off,” and this can be a bad thing. Take some time to consider the many benefits of reading your child will enjoy if they continue the activity over the holiday break.
Benefits of Reading
There are many benefits that go hand-in-hand with reading for pleasure. Kids who engage in reading time have better critical thinking skills, higher creativity, a more inquisitive nature and a better vocabulary, which directly translates into better communication skills. Their brain tends to fire faster and more frequently, making them generally sharper and more attentive.
Like any skill, however, these mental muscles can atrophy if not used. It’s vital to keep your child’s reading skills and passion for the process going even when they are not in school, whether it’s over holiday break or summer vacation.
When Christmas Break is Reading Break
Kids need to keep their reading muscles active in order to keep the benefits going. Reading regularly helps them strengthen their skills. A few weeks of not reading can turn into months of skills loss, causing them to fall behind without warning. The more time they spend not reading, the worse this loss of skills get. It’s vital not to let this happen by not allowing kids to stop reading over the holiday break.
Keep Kids Going
Make sure that every day over break, your child spends at least a half hour of quiet reading time. If you can, read with them so they don’t feel like they’re being punished. Let them choose what they want to read—a graphic novel may not be your first choice, but it’s better than not reading!
Try to make reading time interactive and fun. Incorporate games, talk about the themes, story and images with the reading. The more interactive the story is, the more likely the child is to get involved and engaged in the reading aspect. This will continue the development of listening, vocabulary and comprehension. Online reading experiences can be a great way to kick start a lapsed reader.
Interactive e-books are an incredible way to not only keep their reading time going, but take it to a whole new level of engagement and fun. If you would like some ideas on how to kick up your child’s reading while they are on Christmas break, try one of our great Christmas-themed ebooks, and then read up on the other great reading and literacy games and tools we have available!