Whether you tell stories straight from your memory or imagination, or you read them out of a book, story time is an important part of a child’s growth process. We learn a lot from hearing stories; more than you might originally think!
Learning from example
Children can learn some amazing lessons about life from stories. For thousands of years, humans have used stories to explain the world around them and pass on knowledge to the next generations. Stories give children examples of how to handle sticky situations, how to treat other people, and dangers to avoid.
We all love getting immersed in a good story, whether it’s biographical or fictional. Sharing story time is a great way to bond with children because everyone’s having fun. Children learn to associate those feelings of fun and relaxation with reading, making them more likely to want to read later on.
Few people can build amazing worlds in their imaginations without first being exposed to wonderful tales of other worlds and times. Giving your children experiences outside of their own world, through the medium of storytelling, helps to build their imagination and encourages creativity for years to come.
A key part of growing up is recognising that other people have feelings and that our own actions can have positive or negative effects on them. Learning to understand others’ feelings and share both pain and joy is important in being part of society. Storytelling helps children to build empathy for others by immersing them in someone else’s story as though they themselves are the protagonist.
When hearing daily stories becomes a joyful habit, children are more likely to seek to learn to read, then to read for themselves, so that they can find and absorb stories on their own. This continues the learning process as well as providing them with a valuable life skill.