Can anything beat the joy of getting lost in a good book? Reading offers all book worms (big and small!) a means of escape. Becoming absorbed in a book takes us up, up and away from our daily existence, and when you share the joy of reading with your little ones, you’re able to take them with you. 

Reading with, and to, your children provides sheer wonderment at all the magical worlds you can be transported to. It’s also an important learning time for children, who reap enormously from the benefits of quiet periods spent reading alone, as well as time together reading aloud. 

According to a recent study published by the American Academy of Pediatrics, reading with a child from early infancy has a lasting effect on language, literacy and early reading skills, and what you read to them when they are infants still has an effect four years later, before they start school. This is just one of many studies that prove the cerebral benefits of shared reading time, but there is another important benefit too – that of connection. When your children are snuggled up to you, and you are turning the pages of a book together, you’re imparting a love of the written word and showing that there is so much more to life than that which is found in the menu of a tablet or phone. 

During weekend downtime, why not create a special reading nook for your little ones, where they can cuddle up with a book in a quiet space. Children’s Lane cushions and blankets are the ideal accessories for a snuggly reading session, or even a cosy armchair to curl up in will do, along with these classics that will never go out of date:

James and the Giant Peach – Roald Dahl

Nineties kids devoured everything written by Roald Dahl, but this book was a particular favourite. The young orphan, who finds a flying peach and befriends a gang of magical bugs who live inside it, made his way into many hearts. The 1996 film adaption of the book only helped to ensure the characters had a more lasting impact. Browse Children’s Lane for a nostalgic collection of Roald Dahl favourites, from The BFG to Fantastic Mr Fox!

Where the Wild Things Are – Maurice Sendak 

This book was a childhood favourite for so many and has continued to remain relevant, capturing the imagination of generations. Naughty Max in his wolf suit is one character so many can relate to and the idea that the walls can melt into an endless forest is timeless and enchanting. 

The Narnia Series – CS Lewis

Few series of books have stood the test of time like the Narnia novels. Starting with The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe, generations of children have stepped through the wardrobe and out into the magical world of Narnia, where it is always winter, but never Christmas. These novels are perfect chapter books for bedtime stories together. Prop yourselves up on our snuggly cushions and settle in for some quality time. 

When building up your child’s library, get hold of some more recent books that are all set to become classics too. 

Look out for The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson, This is Not My Hat by Jon Klassen and Rules of Summer by Shaun Tan. 

Happy reading!