Reading to Young Kids Proven Crucial to Their Early Development
Maya Angelou once said, "You have to remember that children are newcomers to the world. They didn't come bringing any information, so they need to learn as much as possible." Laura Bush echoed her sentiment, "As a child, I loved listening to my mother read to me. Little did I know she was doing much more than providing comfort and entertainment; she was paving the way for my learning and success at school." Today, the American Academy of Pediatrics issued a new policy that reinforces both of their statements.
Now, every time you take your child to the pediatrician, your doctor will advise you to read aloud. "With the increased recognition that an important part of brain development occurs within the first three years of a child's life, and that reading to children enhances vocabulary and other important communication skills, the group, which represents 62,000 pediatricians across the country, is asking its members to become powerful advocates for reading aloud, every time a baby visits the doctor," The New York Times reports about this new policy.
It may not seem like a landmark event, but this is actually the first time the APA has officially issued a statement about early literacy education. The group is taking action due to studies conducted in the past few years that found many children from all socioeconomic backgrounds, "[D]o not experience the enhanced engagement and language-rich parent-child interactions, including book handling, print exposure and other early literacy experiences afforded by daily shared reading."
In addition to pediatricians encouraging parents to read to their children, the new policy will join forces with Too Small to Fail to distribute books to low-income families.