Reading to children gives them a chance to feel loved and learn by repetition. Includes tips for parents who don't like to read.
When parents read to their children it’s a great chance to share time, books and attention, and cuddle up together. It’s a rich (multi-sensory) experience, and helps children feel loved – which is when they learn best.
Repetition means better connections
Babies and toddlers thrive on repetition, because it builds strong brain connections – so whānau can expect to be reading the ‘favourites’ many times over.
In Whakatipu Te Pihinga 3 (page 22), pēpi says: ‘I have my favourite pukapuka and recognise the pictures.’
For parents who don’t like to read
If parents have difficulty reading, encourage them to look at the pictures with their child and talk about them, name the objects and make up a story about the pictures.
There’s often an opportunity to make a special book about ‘me’ (the child), like ‘When Nana came to stay’, or to make up and tell a favourite story.
Storytelling is very important too. For example, ‘The night I was born’, can be told over and over again, especially on birthdays.