The importance of fairy tales at bedtime
In an era dominated by technology, animated movies, tablets and much more, reading bedtime stories to your kids is very important, and it is a moment that parents, grandparents and even teachers should share with children.
Listening to a fairy tale satisfies the child's natural desire to hear stories about things that happen, which generally develops at about the age of 2 and then further evolves when he or she is 6, when the child starts to read. Listening to a story develops what is known as narrative thought, namely the cognitive skills through which people structure their existence and give it meaning.
Listening to a fairy tale, triggers real and imaginative thinking in the child, who processes what he hears according to real and imaginary reasoning.
Another aspect that should not be underestimated is the psychological development of children in different areas: language, emotionality/affectivity, sociability/morality. As a child listens to the fairy tale, he acquires new words and linguistic skills, while from an emotional point of view fairy tales have an enormous impact on children. Children learn to love and identify themselves with the characters, and experience their joys, sorrows and adventures first hand. Some parents wonder if telling children stories that are in some way traumatic, is the right thing to do. As matter of fact, fairy tales allow children to experience strong emotions quite harmlessly, since they are not the key players and, at the same time, they are protected by a parent. This helps the child acquire the skills he or she requires to cope with certain fears in real life.
From a social and moral point of view, fairy tales help children become supportive and develop a spirit of collaboration, and better understand negative behaviour such as jealousy or deceit, and the consequences they bring. This may be an opening for parents to talk to their children about what is wrong and what is right.
So, our advice to you is to keep on reading fairy tales to your children, better still if the books you read to them are illustrated, since they help your children develop their imagination in a healthy manner!