Not in my house they aren't!
This evening I came across an article about an immense decline in the reading of bedtime stories to today's youth. This is a HUGE travesty to me. This is why vocabulary and grammar has taken such a huge decline in recent years. The article I found lists an alarming rate of only 13 percent of British mom's who say that they read their child a bedtime story every night to their children (with children under the age of 7). Americans weren't much better with a rate of 33 percent saying that they read to their children every night.
The last part of the bedtime ritual (besides looking out the window to see the moon and stars) is bedtime stories. We even read them before nap time. 2 books for nap time and 3 books for night time. Although Liam is always trying to bargain for more books or reading a book half way through deciding he wants a different book and then wanting to exchange it.
Reading is so ritualistic that I may even miss it more than Liam if it were to end. It is our time to snuggle in together, sometimes he reads to me, and sometimes I read to him. Some books we take turns reading different parts, or pointing out what we see in the book. Liam loves to find books that have the same sort of picture or topic so that he can match them up. If he has a book about a firetruck he is always running to get his firetruck so show me that they are both firetrucks. This is a precious time that is devoted to just focusing on Liam and winding down before he goes to sleep. I value this time greatly and am sorry to anyone that does not take this time to share with their children. It is a part of my nightly schedule and it is something that NEVER gets cut out.
I think that missing out on story time is missing out on such a huge time of bonding with your child. I urge any parent that does not already read to their children to take even 5-10 minutes a day to read a book to their child. You are doing SO much more than just reading to them. You are showing them attention, teaching them so many things, passing on so many valuable things that will shape them forever in their life. How many of us can remember being read or not being read to and feeling left out because of it. I was fortunate enough to definitely have had stories read to me that helped establish my love for books that never left me and I will be forever grateful for the quality time that was spent on bedtime stories.
Link to the story: Sweet Dreams, Bedtime Stories