Reading to Your Kids Is Way More Important Than You Think

Katie Sweeney

Parents of young children are often told that they should read to their children. However, there has never been a scientifically proven biological reason why it’s important to read to kids—until now.

Huffpost Parents reports on a new study to be published tomorrow in the journal Pediatrics that demonstrates the positive effects reading has on a developing child’s brain. Researchers took MRIs of children while they listened to both recordings of a woman reading stories and plain background noise. They found that the children’s brains were more active while they listened to the stories.

Dr. Thomas DeWitt, director of pediatrics at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, said, “This is a small and very early study, but the exciting thing it was able to demonstrate is that early reading does have an impact on the parts of the brain that are fundamental for developing literacy early on. It's biological evidence that transcends empirical studies."

Although it’s unknown whether the person who reads to the child plays any role in the brain development, DeWitt hopes to investigate this in future studies. The moral of the story? Reading to your young children is incredibly significant and crucial to help them grow into smart, functional kids.

Introduce your toddlers to the joys of reading with this box set of six Curious George books.

What books do you read to your children?

Explore: Kids, Advice, reading

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