5 Amazing Benefits of Reading Bedtime Stories

The benefits are even better than you could dream!

“Just one more book”?

Does that question sound familiar? While it is a well-known stall tactic, parents and caregivers shouldn’t be so quick to dismiss the request from a little one. There are a surprising number of benefits to reading stories to your kiddo before bedtime.

Books build vocabulary

According to the million-word gap study by Ohio State University, there is a noticeable difference in vocabulary between children who are read to and children who are not exposed to books. In fact, young children whose parents read them five books a day enter kindergarten having heard about 1.4 million more words than kids who were never read to.

Reading improves mental well-being

Children who enjoy reading and do it regularly outside of school are three times more likely to have high levels of mental well-being than those who are less engaged with literacy, The National Literacy Trust found.

Stories help everyone sleep better

Ongoing research shows that cozying up with a book before going to sleep can boost the overall sleep health of both the child who is being read to and the parent or caregiver who is reading.

Reading together helps lower stress levels

Neuroscientists have long believed that being read a familiar book while snuggling close to a parent can comfort a child, resulting in lower cortisol levels and more of a relaxed feeling throughout the brain and body. Recent studies show that six minutes of shared reading can reduce stress in kids by more than 60 percent.

Bedtime stories nourish parent-child bonds

Reading a book out loud together is a wonderful way to bond with a child and create lasting memories. Making this a nightly routine reinforces the bond and strengthens the relationship. Many experts believe parents stop reading to children too soon and should continue this routine long after children enter grade school.

Sponsored content brought to you by Wayne County Community College District. For more information, visit wcccd.edu.


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