Read Alouds

Having kiddos and being their prime educator has truly been a blessing. We have our moments where it is not picture perfect but we do our best. My friend Sarah and I recently opened a learning center called Deeply Rooted for homeschooling families to have a home base but also for the public to learn other life skills (knitting, woodworking, tutoring, bead making, art, etc.). It has been so much fun watching it grow and I am really excited to see where it takes off.

We have two events this week that I would love to see you at, Homeschooling Q & A on July 17 @ 6pm and Essential Oils 101 July 18 @ 6pm. The address is 1401 Bayshore Rd Villas, NJ.

But in honor of our Homeschooling Q & A, I wanted to talk to you about the benefits of reading aloud as a family. I was a school teacher in the public school system for 7 years and the biggest downfall I found was the lack of reading students do today. My favorite question to them was always what is your favorite book? or what are you reading right now? I would have some students respond with a smile and begin to answer, but the majority of them would say they don't like to read and are not reading anything, unless it was assigned reading. This kills me!!!! Why don't our children enjoy reading for pleasure?

I believe the answer is in family read aloud. Even though your child is in a school system does not mean you are not their educator. You were the ones who taught them to talk, walk, eat and play. It was your influence that made all that possible, why stop when they turn 5 and start going to school. If you are passionate about reading or even show a little interest, you could move your child to love reading.

So why do care? Instead of just hearing it from me, check out the benefits listed in this PBS article:
"But reading also strengthens children’s social, emotional, and character development. According to a recently published study, reading to very young children is linked to decreased levels of aggression, hyperactivity, and attention difficulties. The study’s lead author shared this insight with The New York Times, “When parents read with their children more . . . they learn to use words to describe feelings that are otherwise difficult and this enables them to better control their behavior when they have challenging feelings like anger or sadness.”

Anger, sadness, mood, these are struggles I hear from my clients all the time. "I'm too tired to parent my children are wild, so I don't have time to care about myself." Maybe family read aloud could start fixing some of these problems. It won't hurt, that's for sure. I also love the benefit of building relationships with your child. What a great way to start discussions with them.

There is one more thing to consider when you are starting to read aloud with your kiddos. What books will you read? You should be choosing sound books that influence good behavior and morals. The classics are always a good place to start. Here is a website that has a great list of read alouds to look at. But you could also go to the library and explore the many books they have on the shelf. They are free and if they don't have the book you want they will order it for you, just ask.

Let me know what you are reading with the family and I hope to see you this week at Deeply Rooted Learning Center.

Stephanie Wiscott