The Importance of Storytelling for Child Development

Once upon a time, there was a child who loved to learn… 

Stories have long been used to share information and understanding, but they’re also highly important for child development. At each Bliss Early Learning Centre we aim to introduce storytelling into every day in various ways, and here’s why. 

Reading children stories can improve their language skills and vocabulary 

Even a simple story can help children develop a great variety of skills. Listening skills, focus, problem-solving skills, vocabulary, grammar and language skills, to name just a few. And the best part is that this learning takes place while the child is engaged and excited to hear what happens next in the story. 

Storytelling can improve recall

It’s been found that story lines can help us to remember details and facts in an effective way. This explains why some children memorise their favourite books with regular reading! Active listening means that the listener begins to predict what comes next in the story, which has benefits for long term memory. These memory benefits can be even more potent when the child tells or recalls the story themselves.

Story time can ignite imaginations

As a little one listens to and engages with different stories, they can build a whole world of experiences outside of their everyday understanding. Underwater adventures, space exploration, unicorns, pirates and neighbourhood adventures – these can all spark imagination and creativity in the minds of children. Reading for kids is also a great opportunity to explore the difference between real-life and make-believe. 

Stories can help little ones to make sense of the world

Humans have long used stories to shape their understanding of the world, from cultural histories to fantasy-based fables. Stories can help children to understand different people, countries, traditions and worlds. As a result, storytelling can help to develop empathy, which together with creativity will be important qualities for future careers.

4 easy tips for quality storytelling:

  • Don’t be afraid to mix it up. Stories can come in the form of songs, poems, picture books, nursery rhymes, your own personal stories and your family or cultural background.
  • Consistency counts: Even one short story every night before bed can have wonderful benefits over time.  
  • Focus on your child’s interests. The best learning books in early childhood are the ones your child is eager to read again and again.
  • Your local library can be a fantastic resource for age-appropriate books that appeal to your little one. Your librarians are there to help! 

You can read more about how we shape our curriculum here, and find a Bliss Early Leaning centre near you here.