Parenting is a joint effort, but depending on the personalities of mom and dad, each parent may take on different roles when it comes to raising their children. Kids learn a lot by example, and they observe behaviors as a mode for learning how to behave themselves. This is why so many kids end up mimicking their parents or even becoming like them, as they get older. Observed behavior is picked up, both consciously and subconsciously, and the actions you take as a parent when you are with your child will play a huge role in their overall development.
Fathers who read and read with their kids are important, especially when it comes to helping boys read. Studies over the years have shown that a majority of readers tend to be women, and elementary grade boys do not read nearly as much as their female counterparts. Due to still-potent gender roles, boys are taught to be physically active and may shy away from reading because it does not necessarily fall under that category. Boys look to their fathers as role models, which is why it is up to dad to help instill the importance of reading early on.
You can do this by reading on your own, reading with your children, or encouraging them to read up on their favorite topics and activities as well. Reading along with your child can be extremely beneficial in a variety of ways. Not only does it allow for you to read together, but you can spend some quality time with one another as well. These moments will create memories that will last a lifetime. Kids also learn by example, so reading on your own can help push them in the right direction, too. If you’re not a big reader yourself, there are other things you can do as well, such as share stories about your life, explore photographic or informational books on topics you like, and share with your child. Involve your child in everyday writing tasks such as composing letters and emails or even paying the bills.
However, dads can help boost the love of reading in daughters, too, so it is important not to forget that reading with any child is incredibly beneficial for their education while also helping build the foundations of your relationship with one another. As stricter and more traditional gender roles dissolve, it is important for both mom and dad to act as a team and to share activities and responsibilities with one another. Dad’s should feel excited about reading with their children along with other activities like crafts or cooking, just as moms should feel excited about playing games, sports and building or fixing things around the house with their kids as well.
Studies have shown that mothers are most often the ones to read to their children. Though there is nothing wrong with women reading to their children, offering kids a variety of different experiences with both parents with reading can be incredibly beneficial to their development. Not only can this help their reading skills but it can also help build special bonds as well.
Men are often seen as people of action. Dads tend to take over when it comes to physical activity or manual labor, and while these skills are important, it is also important not to get hung up on gender roles. Reading is just as much an activity as anything else; ‘to read’ is a verb, right? It’s something you do! And we all know that having two people read the same thing can provide drastically different results. So having dad step in and do some reading can help broaden a child’s imagination as well as their reading skills.
Studies have actually shown that kids who read with both their mother and their father performed better on standardized tests and had a wider grasp on a more diverse vocabulary. This is because mom and dad both bring something unique to the table. Each person is different and will inherently bring a different skill set to whatever activity parent and child are partaking in. This applies to reading as well.
Similar studies have also shown that not only are kids more well-rounded in terms of their reading skills, but that they are generally better behaved and more emotionally developed as well. This is often because fathers who regularly read to their children also share in caregiving responsibilities with mom, leading to higher self-esteem, better attachment and healthier social competence in kids.
Regardless of whether the child is a boy or a girl, having daddy read to them is important. Statistically, boys do not read nearly as much as girls do and there have been plenty of campaigns pushed by children’s publishers to entice boys to pick up more books. Having dad read can help young boys feel more confident in reading, regardless of subject material. Another study shows that boys who read with or are regularly read to by their fathers are more likely to score higher in terms of reading comprehension and overall achievement. However, when it comes to girls and reading with their fathers, they can gain more confidence and insight because dad can offer a different perspective and suggest a different array of books and topics than mom would choose.
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When it comes to school activities, art projects, homework and reading, usually in most households these tasks default to the Mom. Sports and outdoor activities and recreation “belong” to Dad. This has become a global stereotype. In reality, both parents should read to the child especially Dad. Here’s why: Bonding TimeReading creates a bonding experience. The physical closeness of story time and cuddling bring you closer to your kids. Hugging, kissing and tickling are all part of this bonding experience especially when it comes to reading. Therefore, it is very important for Dads to experience this bonding separately from Mom. Children will never forget these special times and they will love you for it. Variety of Voice and EmotionWhen reading and acting out voices and emotions it’s important that children get used to the different tones and accents from Mom and Dad. It’s part of their hearing and learning experience which increases their comprehension. Double Reinforcement: Set the Example If the kids see Mom reading then they will think reading is worthwhile. However, when Dad also jumps on the bandwagon the kids will start to realize that there is something to this “reading” thing. That is why reading with your kids early on in the process (both Mom and Dad) can help instill a love of reading in children. The more people that seem interested in reading will help reinforce that reading is something important and enjoyable. Reading is quiet and calm time As mentioned previously Dads are involved with sports and outdoor recreation (anything and everything active such as running, wrestling, playing with the kids). However, reading is a very sedentary, calm event. If Dad can now show kids that playtime is over and sit still with a book on his lap reading with the kids, they will also learn how to calm down after an active event. In the long run this will help them in school. Studies show that many teachers have reported that it is extremely difficult to get kids to focus on school work after playtime (or lunch). Instilling this principle in the home will help your children in school and with reading.
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