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Reading to your child each day has amazing benefits; it stimulates language skills in the early years, helps them do better at school and in life, and gives you important bonding time together.

It’s never too early to enjoy stories with the little ones in your life. Here are some dad-focused tips to help you make reading an enjoyable and nourishing part of family life. 

1. Make it routine

Including reading in your child’s daily routine has many wonderful benefits. It’s lots of fun and doesn’t takelong. A few minutes each day, especially at bedtime, gives you time to cuddle and helps with bonding.

2. Encourage them to join in

Encourage children to join in while sharing a book and ask them what they like or do not like. It will help children develop their language skills as they get the chance to tell you what they think.

3. Talk, talk, talk

Make sure to discuss what you read. Ask your child what they think could happen next or who their favourite character is, and why. Give them time to think and formulate an answer.

4. Let them choose

If your child has a book or story that he or she wants to read, encourage them!They will be more engaged if they help choose.

5. Include mum

It is really important for you to participate in reading time, but remember to involve mum too!Children enjoy listening to different people reading to them and it’s nice to spend time reading as a family.

6. Be a positive role model

Research has shown that parents who show an active interest in reading inspire children to do the same. It doesn’t even have to be a book: share the sports pages of the newspaper, or look for words on signs when you are out and about. If your children see you reading for fun then they will be more likely to reach for a book!

7. Enjoy yourself!

Reading time is fun for both you and your child!The more fun you have, the more fun your child will have.



Bookbug is for all families in Scotland. Every baby and child is entitled to receive four free Bookbug bags. Parents and children can also enjoy stories, songs and rhymes at free Bookbug Sessions in their local library. Dads are welcome!

Not sure where to get started? You can find great book recommendations arranged by theme on the Scottish Book Trust website.

Read On. Get On.

Read On. Get On is a national campaign geared at improving literacy rates across the UK, with a mission to have every child a confident reader at the age of 11 by 2025.

Year of the Dad

The Year of the Dad is all about celebrating the difference a great dad makes, and our website is packed with resources – including downloadable e-versions of this factsheet and many others.

Early Years Scotland

Early Years Scotland is committed to providing the very best start in life for every child in Scotland. We are the leading national third sector organisation for children pre-birth to 5.

Prepared by Ahmed T. Ragheb