Reading books with your child ‘turbocharges’ their brain- Dr. Sukhmeet Bedi
If storytime isn’t currently a part of your child’s bedtime routine, you might want to consider adding it in.Storytime boosts their memory and problem-solving skills.
Researchers used MRI scans to look at the brains of 4- year olds during storytime.The study involved functional MRI scans of 22 girls, age 4, to explore the relationship between engagement and verbal interactivity during a mother-child reading observation and neural activation and connectivity during a story listening task.
Children exhibiting greater interest in the narrative showed increased activation in right-sided cerebellar areas of the brain, thought to support cognitive skill acquisition and refinement via connection to language, association and executive function areas.
“Our findings underscore the importance of interventions explicitly addressing both parent and child reading engagement, including awareness and reduction of distractions such as cellphones, which were the most common preventable barrier that we observed,” Hutton said.
An important point to note is that while reading to children has many benefits, simply speaking the words aloud may not be enough to improve cognitive development in preschoolers, according to the study.
The findings, published in the journal PLOS ONE, reinforce the value of “dialogic reading,” where the child is encouraged to actively participate
The takeaway for parents in this study is that they should engage more when reading with their child, ask questions, have them turn the page, and interact with each other,” said lead author of the study John Hutton, a pediatrician at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Centre in the US.