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The Importance of Stories, Songs and Rhymes for children of all ages

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Reading, songs and rhymes are a very important for the development of your child.  They not only help with using and understanding words but give you child and interest in these areas. 

Song and rhyme teach us about language and help us to remember stories.  Many legends, fables and  biblical stories are put to song or rhyme such as the Psalms which remind us of God’s sovereignty. 

Children love songs and rhymes with actions.   This encourages them to be involved in group activities.  In participating we not only learn the song but the actions too.  Both of which need skill and lots of concentration to put the two together at the some time.

Reading, songs and rhymes  can be used (especially with older children) as a form of relaxation or unwinding before bed.  When he is very young it doesn’t matter what you are reading because it is the soothing sound of your voice that will relax him.  You can use this time to catch up on your mail, read a magazine or the latest novel. 

As he becomes more interested in what you are reading, choose baby books with strong bright colours and simple pictures.  When reading, make it interesting.  Talk about the pictures.  Choose fabric or cardboard pages for the very young so he may turn the pages without tearing them.  When putting an older child to bed, a story time can become part of his bedtime routine.  He will recognize it as a quality time with parents or loved ones, a special time to calm down and relax before sleeping.  This quiet time can be part of his daytime sleep routine too.

Children who have been read to since early childhood grow to love reading.  Reading is an integral part of growing up and those who love to read are usually those who love learning. 

It is ideal to start these activities when you child is very young.   Form a habit of reading and singing to him regularly, this will help him to concentrate, to sit still on your lap or opposite you when he needs to copy your actions. 

Your Baby Can Read

As seen on Today Tonight and A Current Affair, babies as young as seven and a half months old are reading their first words after using the Your Baby Can Read! Series.

Your Baby Can Read! is a whole new way of learning. Based on the research of Robert C. Titzer C, Ph.D., Your Baby Can Read! is the first video series in the world designed to help babies, toddlers, and preschoolers learn to read! Gaining the attention of national TV news and other media, as well as thousands of babies across Australia, "Dr. Titzer's multi-sensory reading approach" teaches little ones to recognize words using several senses at the same time.

How your child will benefit:

  • helps your child learn to recognize words.
  • Stimulates brain development.
  • Makes learning fun and interactive.
  • Encourages early language acquisition .
  • Gives you an effective tool to stimulate your child.
  • Teaches reading during the window of opportunity for learning language.
  • Entertains your child with children, animals, sing-along songs, and poems.

Why should parents teach their babies to read?

It's easier to learn language skills at a higher level earlier in life than it is later in life. Babies and toddlers learn to understand language and speak naturally simply by listening to language. If babies are allowed to see the language, they can also learn written language just as naturally. We would never imagine waiting until age 5 or 6 to speak to children so why should we wait until age 5 or 6 to allow children to see our language.

What is this video about?

Theses videos allow the children to see the language at the same time they hear the language in a fun, interactive way. The videos use animals, other young children, and songs that are interesting to young children. The main idea behind the videos is that we try to help the children develop an association between the written words, their sounds, and their meanings. Over time, the babies figure out enough of these associations so that they learn the sounds that the letters make.

How does it work?

We use an interactive and multi-sensory approach.  The children are allowed to see the words at the same time that they hear the words. So, the infants are able to see and hear words instead of simply hearing the words. 

Additionally, we encourage the babies to participate by saying the words and by doing physical actions that help the children learn the meanings of the words.

Does your video series teach phonics?

We have sections of the videos that teach phonics.  Many infants have learned to read phonetically at very advanced levels with this system because they picked up the patterns of the written language all by themselves.  Three-year-old children may say,  “I swimmed yesterday.” instead of  “I swam yesterday.” because they figure out the pattern of adding an “ed” onto words to make them past tense. Young children who watch our videos may learn the patterns of the written language or phonics after they learn to read several dozen words.  This happens because after they learn to read many words, they will pick up the patterns of the language.  In other words, they will learn to recognize that words beginning with the letter “d” make the ‘d’ sound after they learn some words that begin with the letter “d”.

Why should parents have their babies watch educational videos instead of watching entertainment-based programs?

Time, Newsweek, and many other magazines have had in-depth reports on infant brain development. Most conclude the same thing – there is a window of opportunity for stimulating infants' brains when babies’ and toddlers’ brains are developing very rapidly. Babies and toddlers have tens of thousands of new connections forming in their brains each second. According to theories of brain development, young children who see the language at the same time they hear the language, see and hear about the meaning of each word, and do physical actions related to the words should have many new synapses connecting the visual cortex with the auditory cortex, somatosensory cortex, and other language areas of the brain.

During a half-hour video, babies have millions of new connections forming in their brains – most of them are not useful when they are watching most TV shows or videos that have only a small educational component. Over time, these connections form the actual physical structure of your child’s brain so it is extremely important which videos that you allow your child to watch.

Additionally, there are longitudinal studies showing positive effects of early stimulation, including higher IQs. At the very least, the evidence suggests that stimulating your infant will lead to more useful synaptic connections in the brain which could provide a foundation for future learning. Our videos could also lead to early independent reading which would open up numerous opportunities for accelerated learning in other areas.

Many of the babies who have learned to read from our videos are advanced in other areas as well (including expressive language, spelling, music, science, geography, and math). Many of the parents report that watching Your Baby Can Read the DVD's or videos helped the child’s development and ability to learn in general.

Tips: Read regularly to your children from an early age and avoid watching senseless TV programs or mindless videos.  

Remember: Our brains are growing at an enormous rate between the ages of birth to five.  Utilize this window of opportunity to benefit your child’s development. 

If you would like more information on this and other similar topics our E-books are packed full of practical parenting tips.  Down load an E-Book specifically related to your child's age group through Publications at Our Shop.

For more about  Your Baby Can Read products. 

How to purchase 'Your Baby Can Read' DVDs and books and other educational tools go to Our Shop.

How Cradle 2 Kindy Can Help

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