South Australia is running a program called Dads Read, to encourage fathers to spend time reading to their children each day.
Dads Read was developed following recent research that highlights the importance of dads reading to their children during their early developmental years, before they start school. Research confirms reading to children for just 10 minutes each day strengthens literacy, models positive behaviour and builds children's self-esteem about reading (especially for boys).
Dads Read encourages fathers to invest in their children's future by choosing to read to them each day.
Reading together is important because it:
- models positive reading behaviour
- prepares your children for learning to read
- helps them to develop a love of reading
- introduces your children to written language
- opens up new worlds for your children’s imagination and understanding
- develops reading mileage – the more time spent reading the more reading improves
- improves your children’s language and listening skills
- builds social skills and family bonds
Five Top Reading Tips
#1 – Read aloud every day
10 minutes of reading aloud every day makes an important difference to your child’s language and literacy development.
#2 – Read anywhere
Read in a variety of places to your child. Read outdoors – in the park, at the beach and on the bus. Just like adults, children enjoy reading in different contexts and times of the day.
#3 – Talk, play and tell stories to your children
Tell your child stories every day about your day, their family, exciting things you’ve seen or done. Reading, storytelling, talking and play helps your child listen and develop social and language skills.
#4 – Read anything!
Storybooks and picture books stimulate imaginations and foster a love of literature. But read recipes, newspapers, brochures, maps and other texts to support your child’s literacy levels in all aspects of their life.
#5 – Make reading fun
Read stories with enthusiasm! Change voices for different characters and alter the volume of your voice to build excitement.