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Most young children are not read to on a daily basis. - Page 3

post #41 of 166
We read all the time. Because I have two kids with good attention spans who love books. So they were easy to read to. I find it much easier to read to them (and often more enjoyable) than to get on the floor and play honestly. We spend probably 1.5 hours or more reading a day on average. In early years it was even more time but they're a better at playing together now.

So I can check off the reading box..but I don't think my kids got a superior early start than any child who wasn't read to every day. In fact, if that parent spent a lot of time playing on the floor or involving their kiddo in life activities (my nephew cooks with his mom and dad every night and has since he was an extremely young toddler. He builds things with his dad, washes windows, helps mommy clean (genuinely does it), etc.), or exploring nature, whatever it is they very well may have had experiences more helpful developmentally than reading.

I feel like a lot better of a parent when we look out the window together and imagine what we would do if we were a bird. Or when we figure out how to fix a chair together. Or when we discover ants and follow them to their home. Reading doesn't seem superior to those things...in fact less so to me.

I think two things--the stats on being read to and outcomes probably are very connected to the social/economic factors at play. And second I do think that exposure to reading and great books can indeed influence a child's love of reading and expand their world. I love books and we have memories built around reading together here. Both my boys would say it's their favorite thing to do. But it doesn't mean I gave them something superior to what another less reading parent did or my kids are that my kids going to be more successful or anything else.
post #42 of 166
It almost seems like the study is equating being read to every night with quality one on one time with their parents. I don't read to DD every night. I'm not one for doing the same thing every day. But I do spend time with her every night. Many times it's playing music (which could mean anything from playing glasses of water to drumming on anything with a good tone), sometimes it's reading, sometimes it's sort of conversational (as much as you can with an 11 mo). I think it's the time dedicated in one on one interaction that's important, not so much as the reading. But I reckon a PP or few said that already.
post #43 of 166
I was an English major in college and remain an avid reader *but* I don't make it a point to read to my kids every single day. Sometimes I'm just not in the mood and skip the bedtime story with no guilt at all. I don't know if my mom read to us every night but I do know that she was never without her nose in a book as were all of my female relatives so my sister and I grew up in a book loving family which had a big influence on us. I figure it will be the same for my girls but, if it's not, I'm ok with them not being huge into books. They may end up like me dh who does all of his reading online. As long as they can comprehend what they read, then I call it good. They don't need to love reading although I think it would be great if they did.
post #44 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by Liquesce View Post
I'm curious what people who believe reading is an integral element to strong intellectual/creative development think of oral storytelling cultures, recitation traditions, etc?
I loved my fathers stories growing up and would beg him again and again to retell them. A story read at bedtime was a less than equal substitute.

This is a fascinating discussion.
post #45 of 166
I can count on one finger how many times I remember being read to as a child... but I was an avid, rabid reader as soon as I learned how. I remember my older sis coming home from kindegarten and begging her to teach me letters so I could read.

I don't think it's the end of the world for children not to be read to *every* night. My parents didn't read to me, but they did read themselves. I saw them reading in bed every night growing up. It's very sad to me that children grow up in households where no one is reading.

I read to DS every day before nap time and before bed. I love it. It's a great way to wind down and let him know it's time to sleep. I can't imagine *not* reading, but I can see how some parents overlook it.
post #46 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by Murihiku View Post
The main reason I had children was so I could read to them.

(Okay, I'm joking. Mostly.)

I like that! I am a huge library nerd and I love reading to DS. I admit I'm surprised about the statistic in the OP.
post #47 of 166
Quote:
That's 13 million children under 6 years old who are going to bed every night without a bedtime story — without the undivided, loving attention that comes with sharing a favorite book with their parents
You know, with multiple children in the house, "reading a book out loud" and "undivided parental attention" are NOT mutually exclusive! Plenty of times, when my kids were little, reading a book out loud meant having both/all the kids climbing all over me, while my attention was trying to focus on the BOOK, not any of the kids in particular. I was much more likely to give a child individual attention when there wasn't a book (and another sibling who wanted to listen) involved.

Plus, when DS was little, having a book read to him meant "attention from a big sister" as often as it meant "attention from a parent"!

Even when my daughters were preschoolers, I don't think we ever read out loud daily. There were days when we'd literally spend hours reading together, and other days when we'd completely skip it. They were certainly read to every week, just not necessarily every DAY. And reading was rarely part of the bedtime routine- often I found that books were just too stimulating for bedtime, and turning off the lights and telling a story (often while nursing) or just talking together was a better way to wind down.
post #48 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by Storm Bride View Post
What really bothers me about the quote in the OP is this:

First of all, Dr. Zuckerman makes that sound as though the 52 percent who aren't read to every night are never read to. That's not what it says. Second...my kids get lots of undivided, loving attention at bedtime. We just happen to have a family tradition, going back to my mom with us, of singing at bedtime, as opposed to reading. With ds1, I used to sing for anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes every night. With dd and ds2, it's usually about 10-15. We also have individual bedtime rituals (not baths and such - a routine sequence of hugs, kisses, "goodnight", "sweet dreams", etc.) that we go through every night. The implication that children who aren't being read to each and every single night are being somehow neglected is really condescending.
:

I read every day, every single day. I don't think there has been a day of my life since I was four that I didn't read SOMETHING. My mother hardly ever read to me, and she was an awesome homeschooling mom.

I sometimes read to my kids at night. I sometimes read to myself while they look at their books. Sometiems we talk, we tell stories, we make up things, we ask questions, we give answers. My Dh is the king of oral storytelling, I'm actually envious because I don't have that skill. The idea that someone is a less-than adequate parent because they don't read Chicka Chicka Boom Boom every single night misses the mark.

I personally think that seeing parents read daily, for information and for pleasure, does as much or more to promote childhood literacy than reading Good Night, Moon every night. That seems pretty straightforward to me. (We did read Good Night, Moon. In English and Spanish. I don't think that it's helped my kids be intrigued by the idea more than having books and reading simply be a daily part of the lives of the people around them.
post #49 of 166
My kids are 6, 7 & 10. I used to read to them, roughly once a week. Sometimes not for a couple of weeks.

The 7yo is reading at a Grade 5 level. The 10yo reading at a Grade 7 level. I'm not sure on my 6yo as they just started reading this year, plus they have a new teacher since after christmas.

My Dad used to read stories to us at night. i stopped when I was around 13, my sister I think had Dad stop when she moved out at 18.

I am an avid reader, I read all the time. Dh never reads unless he's in the bathroom.

All 3 of them LOVE books & love to read. Not reading certainly hasn't hurt them at all.
post #50 of 166
I just got through reading all of the replies and it was really a lot of food for thought. In fact, I think we might be part of that 52%. We value reading a lot, but for example if we spend the day with friends and DS falls asleep in the car on the way home I don't wake him up to read to him. Also, I am a SAHM with a partner and one child, so I imagine that if I had two children and perhaps no partner and a different working circumstance it might not be as easy to devote time to reading every single day. It wouldn't mean that I value literacy or my kids any less though, or that they would be worse off.
post #51 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamarootoo View Post
i read to our 21mo DD every day, but not at bedtime. books don't calm her down.. they get her mind going 90mph and that is not something i want right before sleep.
Yup, that's my son. I had this plan to read to him every night. Turns out if you read him a book he'll mull it over, recite parts of it, and make up new bits of the story for 1-2 hours.

We read together in the mornings, mostly. I'm relaxed about it - way more than I ever thought I would be - at this age (3.5). We all love books, but we also love signs, cereal boxes, etc. It naturally comes.
post #52 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by ema-adama View Post
I loved my fathers stories growing up and would beg him again and again to retell them. A story read at bedtime was a less than equal substitute.
See, I'm totally jealous of people with the storytelling gift. My kids are often shortchanged by a bedtime story, or even a song. They want me to make something up - to tell them a story or make up a song about a bear or a butterfly or a train or a frog or a kite or...just about anything. I'm not good at that, especially on the spur of the moment. I can sometimes come up with a lame four-line rhyme or something, but that's about it. When I'm particularly tired, I can't even manage that. Even reading out loud is comparatively easy for me. Singing is the easiest.
post #53 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruthla View Post
You know, with multiple children in the house, "reading a book out loud" and "undivided parental attention" are NOT mutually exclusive! Plenty of times, when my kids were little, reading a book out loud meant having both/all the kids climbing all over me, while my attention was trying to focus on the BOOK, not any of the kids in particular.
Since ds2 stopped taking daily naps (it's been about a month), reading to dd has become incredibly difficult. We don't do it daily, anymore...probably manage 3-4 days during the week, and maybe once on the weekend. DS2 just won't settle down, and he interrupts and climbs on me, and tries to tell us about a bunch of other stuff. It's definitely not "undivided parental attention" for dd - not even close. We used to have a cup of herbal tea each (no more - ds2 is the King of Spills) and snuggle up to read for an hour(ish) of mama/daughter time. No more. We still snuggle up, but that's about it.
post #54 of 166
I read atleast one story a day to my kiddo's. Sometimes I do forget but generally we read atleast once a day.

I got a treasury of children's poetry at Christmas and they love it!!
post #55 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by Storm Bride View Post
Even reading out loud is comparatively easy for me.
And that's kind of the thing ... reading is, in the grand scheme of things, a really easy, quick, no-planning-necessary, cheap (free with access to a halfway decent library), non-strenuous, non-stressful, easily repeated activity ... in short, one of the easiest ways to promote for families to regularly come together and do something together. Rather like the "family dinner" campaign. Just with reading, maybe somewhere along the way the means has gotten a little conflated with the effect.
post #56 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by Attached Mama View Post
I think the problem is that parents don't start when their baby is like 1 wk old, so then time just evolves and the kids don't develop much attn span for it and the parents just don't ever get around to it. The kid has lived thus long w/o it so why start now?

I'm a huge fan of starting as soon as possible after birth. DD loved looking at the pictures under 1 wk old. Just a few secs per page while I pointed out things to her. Now at 3 she's good for chapter books with little to no pictures - has a much longer attn span and much larger vocab than her peers.

Also it's important to know how to start - just spending 3-5 seconds per page pointing out something the child likes (animals, flowers etc for example "Here's a doggie. Doggie says woof woof, woof woof" and then on to the next page). Well before a year a child will sit thru board book stories and other short stories if one begins this way. It's also important to vary tone of voice and act dramatic and excited to keep little one's attention. "Oh wow! A cat! Cat says meow,meow"

I am not surprised so many kids are not read to. We are a media driven society not a print society anymore. It is appalling tho.

I've never read to my babies. I didn't really start reading to dd1 till she was over a year old. And guess what, she is three and can also sit through chapter books and will spend an hour just sitting and looking at books. So I don't really think starting birth is necessary to have a good reader.
post #57 of 166
I haven't read the whole thread, but:
Reading is one of the most important parts of my life. I am always reading at least two books and also listening to one on CD. My DD has probably heard over 1000 hours of classic literature on CD since she was born just from being in the car/house with me (and she's 22 mos). However, I have heard--
and don't have time to look up sources-- but I heard this on NPR --- that the greatest predictor of how much a child will read is how much they see their parents reading. She sees me reading every day and knows it is very important to me.
Honestly, though, I don't read to her *every single day*. 75% of the days, at least, and then it's generally 3 or 4 books at a time. But if she is having a meltdown at bedtime, would rather play legos, whatever-- I don't push it. When she's older, I expect I will be more vigilant, though.
post #58 of 166
We're part of the 52%. I hug, kiss, and talk to my kids at bedtime, but we hardly ever read a bedtime story. My kids don't really like being read to, especially my 7-year-old who reads as well as many adults I know.
post #59 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by Liquesce View Post
And that's kind of the thing ... reading is, in the grand scheme of things, a really easy, quick, no-planning-necessary, cheap (free with access to a halfway decent library), non-strenuous, non-stressful, easily repeated activity ... in short, one of the easiest ways to promote for families to regularly come together and do something together. Rather like the "family dinner" campaign. Just with reading, maybe somewhere along the way the means has gotten a little conflated with the effect.
We are avid readers, and my kids would riot if I didn't read to them at bedtime, but I certainly hope you're right about the family dinner thing, because we are a little lacking in that area.
post #60 of 166
reading in my opinion is over-rated. it is one of the things a parent does. i feel it has nothing to do with literacy.

in the realm of parenting reading is just one part. this huge thing about HAVE to is brainwashing. to feed our factories and offices with communicative adults.

reading was part of my parenting. it just happens to be what i love doing. and it is a habit my dd enjoys too.

i wish people would instead pay attention to the oral tradition that is so dying. the art of story telling is dying. it is those kinds of stories i found my dd enjoyed the most. to me story telling which is many times history about her ancestors are equally important if not more.

this whole emphasis on knowing colours, shapes and the amount of shame associated with the children who do not know them is just plain ridiculous.

the concept 'in their own time' is being lost and i mourn that.

nothing needs to be taught to children. in time they pick it up on their own. like swinging. one day it clicks with no lessons and the child can swing.

books are taking away imagination and creative thinking from kids. when was the last time your child made up a story. and stayed with it and developed sub plots to it.

i have not read the links the OP posted.
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