Reuters May 22, 2009
Almost two-thirds of children want their parents to spend more time reading to them before bed, and most prefer Mum’s storytelling to Dad’s, researchers said on Friday. They conducted a study that showed younger children aged 3-4 were most hungry for more stories, with over three-quarters saying they wished their parents read to them more often. More than half of all children aged 3-8 said story time was their favorite pastime with their parents.
“The results of our research confirm the traditional activity of storytelling continues to be a powerful learning and emotional resource in children’s lives,” said child psychologist Richard Woolfson, who led the study commissioned by Disney/Pixar World of Cars. Storytelling ranked higher than television or video games among pastimes for kids, and 82 percent said reading a story with their parents helped them sleep better, according the survey of 500 children aged 3-8 in Britain. The best storytellers were mothers who used funny voices to illustrate different characters or made their own special sound effects to keep the story moving, researchers said.