The day is over, the teeth are brushed, your child is in his pajamas. It’s story time, the one we tell before saying good night. From the earliest age, this ritual is beneficial for all members of the family. Let us explain why!
1/ A COMFORTING RITUAL
For some children, the night represents an anxious transition. Leaving mom and dad behind for the night, seeing the shadows that transform the house and their room grow, parents less present to meet their immediate needs… In order to be reassured, children need to anticipate what is going to happen thanks to landmarks and a cycle of habits like the evening ritual. Of which the story is a part!
2/ TIME FOR CUDDLE
3/ STORIES FOR GROWING UP
As parents, we don’t always have ALL the solutions to solve every problem. Is your kid afraid of the dark? Did his friend tease him at the daycare? Does he like pink when his friends tell him it sucks? Be happy: to solve every problem, there is always a book! It’s almost magical, quick and practical. Go to your local library or bookstore and pick up a book on the issue of the moment. Read it, let your child identify with the characters in the story, and then open the debate. As your child lies in bed, he or she will surely have something to confide in you and a moral to draw from the bedtime story.
4/ DEVELOP HIS IMAGINATION
We did not put this argument in the number 1 position because it seems so obvious, right? When we read, we are immersed in a new world, whether it is real or not. Children discover new characters, colorful worlds, drawings that feed their imagination and their knowledge.
5 / BOOST HIS LANGUAGE
Another bonus: your child will discover written language and expand his vocabulary. He will discover verbal tenses, synonyms, new words and many other tools to express himself. Don’t hesitate to stop reading to explain unfamiliar terms.
6/ BYE BYE SCREENS
Let’s talk numbers (it’s more serious). According to the pros, baby should sleep between 14 and 17 hours a day until the age of three months. By age 3, he or she should be getting between 10 and 13 hours of sleep. Rest assured, this is an average, not a law, all children are different. It is during sleep that the child’s brain integrates the information learned during the day. The problem with screens is that they disturb their biological rhythm. The famous blue light of screens keeps them awake, while a book calms them down and prepares them for sleep. CQFD. PS: It works for adults too!
7/ THE MEMORY FACTORY
Do you have memories of beloved stories that you read or listened to as a child? Sometimes we even have a childhood book that follows us forever. Reading is a beautiful gift to give to our children for later on. A little Proust’s madeleine that smells of evening cuddles, soft light and soft sheets.
It’s decided, the evening story will be part of your ritual, but you still have some questions…
At what age can children start reading bedtime stories?
Child psychiatrists agree that you can read even before language development. Ask your bookstore or librarian for advice; there are books for toddlers, such as picture books or contrasting books – Tana Hoban for example. As for rituals, they should be established as soon as possible.
Our own book: Charlie takes flight
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