We love storytime at Step Ahead. There’s something so magical about being able to take a bunch of busy, energised, excited children and transform them in just five minutes on the mat - silent and spellbound as they hang on to your every last word while their imaginations explode with possibilities.
We love books – for all sorts of reasons. As well as their ability to spark a child’s imagination before your very eyes, they create a bond that becomes very special over time. During the level 4 in lockdown in March, our children missed storytime so much we decided to do stories via zoom that all our children could tune into from home – it was awesome!
Research has proven that reading creates a strong bond between a caregiver and child, especially during their first 1000 days, which in turn significantly improves outcomes in life for the child and the wider family
Taking time to read to their child—especially as a baby—is a key driver of early attachment and a great way to connect with your children, especially when they are tired or in need of some quiet time.
And of course, reading is hugely important for a child’s literacy development. In fact, reading enhances the language and literacy experiences of children and adults and increases their motivation to read, their enjoyment of reading, their engagement in reading, and the frequency with which they read. Reading also helps with language, literacy, numeracy and comprehension, to really give your children a head start at school.
With such a challenging year for many, it’s nice to think that the simple act of reading a story to your child can help them to feel calm and safe. Reading creates the opportunity to cuddle them or sit close to your children, which in turn helps them to feel loved, cared for and protected.
Storytime is part of our bedtime routine as it’s a great way to get our daughters racing to jump in bed for a story and a snuggle. There is so much fun to be had with funny voices, acting things out, talking about ‘what if’ or ‘what next’ and even helping your children create their own stories.
As well as our local bookstores, you can also pick up preloved books from places like the Hospice Shop, the Piggery and Book Inn in Kamo – or even better, start swapping with your friends, so that your children get the chance to read new books but still have their old favourites to go back to!