Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Bedtime Stories

For those celebrating National Storytelling Week, bedtime can be a prefect time to wind down and read a a story together. One of the most common questions I am asked, when people are looking for book advice, is what are the best books for bedtime ? One of my current favourites is Belle and Boo and the Goodnight Kiss. The Belle and Boo books are just adorable, beautifully illustrated by Mandy Sutton, the various books in the series, are sure to take us back to our childhood bedtime rituals. ' Goodnight Kiss ' is a book of play and discovery, with a sweet tale of through the eyes of Belle and her best friend, Boo the rabbit. Featuring story time, bath time and teeth brushing, it will resonate with many children and you will both delight in the closing goodnight kiss.

Whilst Belle and Boo certainly has that vintage feel, if you are looking for traditional tales for bedtimes Claire Beaton's Bedtime Rhymes is ideal for babies, as is her bedtime lullaby book, Mrs Moon is good for helping little ones drift off to sleep. Lullabies and gentle nursery rhymes, such as twinkle twinkle, are great additions to bed time routines, for babies and toddlers. Take your toddlers lead and if she does not want to look at pictures and appears to tired for a book, a song or two may just help her drift off.

For toddlers and younger children, here are a few of my favourites from Barefoot Books.


My daughter's long term favourite book for bedtime is ' A Bit Lost ', an adorable book by Chris Hopgood that has a great feel good factor when a little owl goes off in search of his mummy, with the support of his forest friends. The amazing illustrations with muted colours that are perfect for bedtime and set the scene for a night of rest.

As you children get older, they will gain more independence when it comes to reading but they may still want enjoy company for their bedtime reading session. If you older child prefers to read alone, you can still get involved in choosing books together and discussing what books he likes.Shared reading is a great way for families to come together, taking turns to read a page or a chapter and exploring the themes of the book together. You are never too old to listen to stories!

As with any type of storytelling session, one size does not fit all. Whilst some children will excitedly look forward to listen to their bedtime stories, others will do anything to get out of the ritual. Listen to your child and do not feel you have to have a bedtime story routine. Your son or daughter may prefer to read in the daytime, so a song or simple silence will benefit. If you do want to encourage more bedtime reading then make sure that your child is involved  by asking them to choose a story and who they would like to read it for them. You may find that you will be reading the same book night after night but just go with it, children love repetition and it will help them become familiar with words and sounds. It is also lovely when they excitedly tell you the story rather than you simply telling them.Be careful not to choose books that will over stimulate, as you may find yourself reading for a very long time. Most of all, make sure you both enjoy your stories and if you want to, simply make your own story up, whether it be a story about what happened that day, what you will be doing tomorrow or simply take one from your wilds of your imagination.

No comments:

Post a Comment