This family long-established tradition can do more than just prepare your children for sleep.

Who doesn’t remember a beautiful fable told by their parents before bed? Or that family story told by our grandmother? The time to listen to a story can be remarkable in a child’s life. Plus, it also strengthens the bonds of affection between the little ones and their caregivers. It is also in childhood that this process of falling in love with books and stories begins.

Today, we will tell you why bedtime stories for kids can serve many purposes and how they can have a great impact on your children’s aptitudes and overall development. At the end of this article, you’ll also find our very first Marialma’s bedtime story written by our special friend Ryan van Wijk.

Why are bedtime stories so important for children?

Of course, every child is different, but reading a bedtime story to a child can be amazingly beneficial to the child and to the person that is doing the reading.

These are some of the reasons why you should start this sleep ritual today:

  • Fairy tales and stories that involve scenes that are not common in our day-to-day lives can trigger your child’s imagination;
  • It strengthens the bond between parents and children as they spend some quality time together at night. In addition, it can help your child to bring forward difficult topics for discussion;
  • It helps the development of oral communication skills, listening abilities, memory, and language recognition skills. Bedtime stories can be crucial to future reading success since it will enhance your child’s vocabulary and accelerate their mastery of language;
  • It improves the attention span and listening skills of children. Therefore, they will concentrate for longer in school;
  • It lowers stress levels and relaxes the child’s mind, setting for a comfortable and sound sleep as children cuddle up in bed and unwind after a long day;
  • It can spark inspiration since many stories have inspiring life stories and good moral at the end. These situations can motivate your child to become a good human being and promote their capacity for empathy.

Marialma’s Bedtime Story by Ryan van Wijk

“Getting them hooked….

Many, many years ago this storyteller, her name is Lotte, was a spoiled 6-year-old girl, a little chubby and cheeky and always in for a laugh. Lotte had a much older brother and sister and lived in a big, spooky house. Her father and mother were busy people, which forced her to catch on to the talents and flaws of the older brother. The brother, a smart teenager, was the doting big brother to his little sister. He played with Lotte, taught her stuff, looked after her, changed nappies as a baby and most importantly, he would read to her at nighttime. Not just plain reading, no this was engaged reading with a good speaking voice, an acting voice, enacting various roles. Lotte was in awe…

Lotte quickly took ownership of the daily bedtime routine by piling all the favorite titles onto the cozy bed. She was surrounded and pampered by the all-time beloved blanket, the stuffed elephant and the smell of freshly laundered sheets. The reading ritual went on till the fun and suspense could no longer fight the sandman. The arrival of the sandman was sometimes feigned and -here comes the flaw-, it happened that Lotte’s brother was faced with two open, eager eyes at the moment he was ready to leave the room thinking she had finally fallen asleep. “One more story pleeeeease”…. and he never said no to that sweet girl’s plea. Thank you, big brother!

Now years later reading to her children’s children, Lotte vividly remembers those cozy, snug reading times. How the personalities in the stories lived their own lives, the way they were intended to be or often made more beautiful or ugly by the reader or the listener. How they disagreed about the characters and tried to make their points. And how they learned about faraway places and situations and so enriched their imagination.

Bedtime reading by a family member or a trusted person is a must, an invaluable tool to enhance any child’s creativity, no matter its age. Being creative is a skill and not an inborn talent. Nighttime reading to your child can lower the daily stress levels. Yes, the reader’s too. Let your child decide on what it wants to read, let’s not be bossy. To explore and get that freedom is magic. I wish all the children in this universe to experience a fun live storyteller, so they can not only develop their language but more than that benefit from the many invisible effects it brings.

Happy bedtime reading!”

– Ryan van Wijk

What is your favorite bedtime story? Let us know!

We hope you have enjoyed our article on bedtime stories. Feel free to pin all the images to your favorite Pinterest board and subscribe to our newsletter, so you can be the first to know about our latest articles. And don’t forget: sleep well, live well!

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