Reading bedtime stories to your kid can be beneficial for both you and your child. It’s a short window of opportunity before your child goes to sleep to provide a nurturing and calm environment to assure a good night’s sleep.
Bedtime stories don’t have to be very long to ensure the benefits. A short 5-minute read while tucking your little one in bed for the night can suffice. Readings can come in the form of short stories, fables, nursery rhymes, lullabies, and even poems. It can be in book form, found online on specialized storytelling websites, or on a downloadable app.
Best Short Bedtime Stories
Here is a list of some of the best short stories for infants and toddlers.
This all-time classic children’s book is about a hungry caterpillar eating his way through the week, each day eating more and more. The colorful pages have holes where the caterpillar ate his way through the book. An excellent book to teach the days of the week.
This beautifully rhyming picture book is about a cute bunny who says goodnight to everyone and everything he meets.
This best-selling book celebrates life and each child’s worth in the world. A book about love and compassion.
Dr. Seus classics are always a fun bedtime read. This one will help teach colors and numbers while having you reading in a funny rhyming fashion.
This is a funny story about a boy who discovers that his coloring crayons don’t want to come out of the box to color because they each have their individual complaints. Great way to teach colors to your kids.
Peppa and George are not sleepy. They have to do many things before they can go to bed, including brushing their teeth and listen to a bedtime story.
This is the story of a little boy called Eric who hates everything about getting ready to go to sleep. His parents come up with a clever plan to get him to go to bed.
Another one of Dr. Seus’ classic books, Oh, The Places You’ll Go! Is amusing to read and shows that life has its ups and downs.
Find Short Bedtime Stories Online
Here are some great websites where you can find an array of short bedtime stories to read to your kids.
- 5-Minute Stories
This website has tons of picture books, fairy tales, poems, and stories all free for you to choose from.
- Short Stories for Children
This website has some of the all-time classics for free.
- Bedtime Short Stories
This website has categories for you to choose from. Again, all free!
Short Stories Apps
With contemporary times has come modern ways to read bedtime stories to your kids. You can find a variety of apps to download on your tablet or smartphone. Some of these are interactive and your child can feel like they are part of the story.
- Little Stories. Books for Kids - Free
- Kidlo Bedtime Stories For Kids - Free
- Epic! - Kids’ Books and Videos -Free
- Bedtime Stories Collection -Free
Benefits of Reading Bedtime Stories
Several research studies have proven that reading to your children can provide a nurturing and bonding experience for both parent and child. Reading also helps with early literacy skills, comprehension, and cognitive skills.
The impact of reading aloud to children is also proven to have sustainable benefits. A child’s behavior can be improved not only for the short-term but also for the long-term. Reading bedtime stories can begin as soon as they are a few months old and go on as long as the child continues to show interest in the nighttime activity.
Some parents will even tell you that they were surprised by the benefits that reading brought to them as a parent. The bonding experience is well documented, but the feeling that you are sharing and planting a possible life-long interest for books and literature can be very rewarding.
Tips and Tricks for Reading Bedtime Stories
Here are a few ideas to help keep your child captivated and focused during bedtime story readings.
- Let your child choose the bedtime story.
During the toddler years, they may choose the same book over and over again. You may feel the desperate need to switch it up. But it’s best to listen to your child’s needs and trust that the repetitive behavior is only a phase and that they will show interest in other options as they grow older.
- Favor books with lots of images.
Not enough can be said about colorful pictures to keep your child interested as you read to them.
- Let your child turn the pages as you read.
Letting your child interact with the book will keep their attention on the reading and will give them a sense of involvement in the activity.
- Read with enthusiasm.
Make the bedtime story as interesting for your child (and you) as you possibly can. Use funny voices, sounds, and exaggerate your intonation slightly in order to keep your child enthralled and stuck on your every word.
- Change the story to make it more personal.
Before your kid can read, there is no reason why you can’t switch up the story to include your child in the story or to mention things that they are familiar with.
It’s proven that reading bedtime stories to your kids will have long-lasting benefits for your child and for you. Choose short bedtime stories that are fun to read. You want to keep your kid captivated and engaged.
By reading bedtime stories you may just plant the seed for a life-long love of books in your kid.