Since A was three months old, we’ve read to her. We’ve always been a family of book lovers and when we moved house in 2015, we had more books in boxes than kitchen supplies. A is no different and she hasbooks to choose from every night to read before bed. And every single night, we read at least five books without fail. It’s a tradition I never see us stopping, even when Little Bean comes along who I’m sure will get in on the act quick enough. In fact, she already has a little library of books started of her own. Personally, I believe that reading books from a young age is so important for so many reasons.
Not only does it encourage communication skills and verbal skills from an early age, it’s also one of the most beautiful ways to bond with your children. It’s educational and encourages your baby and toddler to learn their numbers, letters, shapes and gives them information about the world around.
A’s speech has always been incredible. She’s never used baby words and her pronunciation is excellent. I have always put this down to the fact that she has had so many books read to her. She already recognises her letters and numbers and surprises me everyday with how much she knows and understands.
And yes, she may have a ridiculous amount of books at her fingertips and yes, she may choose to read the same five books over and over again but that’s perfect because repitition is important in her world.
I sincerely hope that as she gets older, starts Montessori and moves on to Primary School, that she takes that love of books with her everywhere she goes. Luckily, reading is widely encouraged in our schools and with the help of organisations like Children’s Books Ireland, B and I can ensure that her love of reading stays apart of her personality for years to come.
Children’s Books Ireland
In fact, Children’s Books Ireland (CBI) is 20 years old this year and they have delivered so much attention and love to the joy of reading for children that I believe they are worth telling you about. If you haven’t heard of them before, CBI are the national children’s books organisation in Ireland encouraging our children to engage with reading and books.
CBI Mission and Vision
Our vision is an Ireland in which books are central to every child’s life and where meaningful engagement with books is supported by passionate and informed adults in families, schools, libraries and communities all across the island.
We strive to make books central to every child’s life on the island of Ireland through developing audiences for children’s books, supporting and celebrating excellent authors and illustrators.
CBI Book Clinics
They run Book Clinics at various festivals and events around the country which is such a fantastic idea one I am hoping to scout out for A this summer. “Parents and children are invited to drop in for an informal consultation with one of Children’s Books Ireland’s friendly panel of Book Doctors, who are ready to offer the best advice for the young readers in your family. When the Book Doctor is ready to see a patient, the consultation begins with some questions about books the young reader previously enjoyed as well as activities, movies, tv shows and video games they enjoy. This lets the Book Doctor know a little bit more about the patient so she can write a book prescription, which is a personalisted list of books recommended for the individual patient. Every patient and their family leave with a Reading Passport containing this book prescription to take to the to their local library or bookshop to have it filled!”
CBI Reading Campaign
CBI run a reading campaign in September every year which aims “to instill a love of reading for pleasure in young people across the country.” The reading campaign is aligned with our public libraries so everyone can easily get involved. In fact, CBI make it even easier for us as they outline all of the upcoming events on their website so there’s no reason for us to miss out.
You can become a member of Children’s Books Ireland with Individual and Professional Membership Rates with varying benefits ranging from receiving three issues of Inis magazine, the Inis Reading Guide, reduced rate entry to the CBI Conference and access to CBI’s online resources.
Personally, I highly recommend signing up as a member if you are a parent, if you home school, are a children’s writer, a librarian or a teacher as the resources CBI offer to you are second to none.
Check out their website for more information on membership.
*** This is a collaborative post however all opinions are mine. I highly encourage and endorse Children’s Books Ireland as a positive educator and promoter of reading in Ireland. ***