Reading
Aloud

3

“I believe it is important time to bond with my child, and many of my own favorite memories from childhood involve my parents reading to me. I love that it also instills a love for books and reading.”

— Father, 4-year-old boy, MA

5 THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT READING ALOUD

Three-quarters of parents with children ages 0–5 (77%) say they started reading aloud to their child before age one, with 40%—up from 30% in 2014—saying they began when their child was less than three months old.

Age of Child When Reading Books Aloud at Home Started

Base: Parents with Children Ages 0–5

QP12. Thinking back, how old was your child when he/she first started being read books aloud at home by you or another family member?

Among the 59% of parents who received advice that children should be read aloud to from birth, the most common sources of this advice are parenting magazines, websites, blogs or books, followed closely by friends and family.

Sources of Advice that children should
be read aloud to from birth

Base: Parents with Children Ages 0–5 Who Received This Advice When Their Child Was a Baby

QP22. Which of the following were sources of the advice to read aloud from birth? NOTE: “Friends and family” net item combines four items: “child’s grandparents,” “other parents,” “teachers I know” and “other relatives/friends.

The frequency of reading aloud to young children has increased since 2014 among parents with kids ages 3–5.

Percentage of Parents Who Say Their Child is Read
Books Aloud 5–7 Days a Week

Base: Children Ages 6–17

QP7. Overall, considering all the people in your family (including yourself) who read books aloud to your child, how often are books currently read aloud to him/her in your home?

Two in three parents with kids ages 0–5 read more than one book each time they read aloud to their children.

Number of Books Parents Read Aloud to Child Each Time

Base: Parents with Children Ages 0–5 Who Are Read Aloud to at Home at Least Once a Week

QP17. Typically, how many books do you read aloud to your child at one time?

Book choice starts early, with the majority of parents with children ages 3–5 saying their child picks out their own books every or most of the time for read alouds. Just over half of parents with kids ages 0–2 (54%) say the same.

Frequency with Which Child Picks out the Books
They Are Read Aloud by Parent(s)

Base: Parents with Children Ages 0–5 Who Are Read Aloud to at Home at Least Once a Week

QP16. How often does your child pick out the book you read aloud?

The frequency of reading aloud still drops significantly after age 5 and again after age 8.

Percentage of Parents Who Say Their Child IS
Read Books Aloud 5–7 Days a Week

Base: Parents with Children Ages 0–11

QP7. Overall, considering all the people in your family (including yourself) who read books aloud to your child, how often are books currently read aloud to him/her in your home?

Parents and kids agree they love read-aloud time.

Degree to Which Parents and Children
Enjoy(ed) Read-Aloud TIME at Home

Base: Children Ages 6–11 Who Are or Were Read Books Aloud at Home;
Parents with Children Ages 6–11 Who Read Books Aloud at Home

QK21. Do you like it when you are read books aloud at home?
OR Did you like being read books aloud at home when you were younger?
QP11. How much do you like reading aloud to your child?

The top reasons parents and children ages 6–11 say they like reading aloud together is that it is a special time with each other and that it’s fun.

Parents’ and Children’s Reasons they Enjoy(ed) Reading Aloud

Base: Parents with Children Ages 6–11 (Left) and
Children Ages 6–11 (Right) Who Love(d) or Like(d) Being Read to Aloud

QP14. Which of the following describe reasons you like(d) reading aloud to your child?
QK22. Which of these, if any, are reasons you like(d)/love(d) being read books aloud at home [when you were younger]?

HISPANIC FAMILIES ARE AWARE OF THE IMPORTANCE OF READING ALOUD AT AN EARLY AGE BUT ARE LESS LIKELY TO READ ALOUD AS FREQUENTLY AS THEIR PEERS

In this analysis, Hispanic families are compared with non-Hispanic families and unless otherwise specified, all differences that are highlighted between the groups are statistically significant at the 90% confidence level or higher. The Hispanic families in the survey represent wide geographic and socio-economic diversity, yet it should be noted that the survey was only offered in English. See Appendix C for sample sizes.