Do I have to read that book again?
Are you sick of Brown Bear? Have you read Goodnight Moon more times than you can count? Why do kids ask to read the same books over and over again and do I have to read it again?
Kids love to hear the same stories more than once but is that okay? Should we be expanding their horizons?
Don’t worry. Hearing stories over and over is good for them. There are benefits, even if it drives you crazy.
One way kids learn is through repetition. They start to remember sounds and patterns which is vital for phonemic awareness. Phonemic awareness is the ability to hear and manipulate sounds. These skills are vital for learning to read. In addition to the increase in phonemic awareness, our children are hearing words. They are remembering vocabulary and increasing their familiarity with words. How do we remember new things? By hearing or doing them over and over.
Another benefit of hearing the same story is better comprehension skills. Children develop relationships with characters. They invest their emotions and feelings into stories. They form connections and learn skills such as decision making, dealing with emotions, and forming friendships. Hearing stories more than once helps them to remember storylines and plots but it also helps them to consider alternate endings, make predictions, and draw conclusions.
Sometimes hearing a familiar story again can be comforting. It causes the reader to feel like they are swaddled in their favorite sweater wrapped in a blanket by the fire. For children, this can simply be a feeling of being home, being with family.
Sometimes, it’s just fun.