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Why you should read bedtime stories to children

From lulling children off to a happy and blissful slumber to educating them about the world in which they live – the benefits of a bedtime story time run far deeper than simply being part of the nightly ritual. Children love nothing more than putting their pyjamas and slippers on, getting ready for bed and settling down for a bedtime story, but why?


The science behind bedtime stories


In a recent study carried out by Time 4 Sleep, 43% of parents said they read to their children almost every night, with more than half saying they do so because it’s a nighttime habit that their little ones love.

However, research by YouGov has shown that being read to also provides important stimulation for childrens’ developing brains as well as being a comforting ritual. A good story activates the imagination and creates a positive pathway for dreams of adventure, fantasy, and mystery that the brain can follow.

Sparking little ones’ imaginations can help them fall into REM sleep – the dream state – quicker, and more importantly for parents, can also help them stay in that deep state of sleep for longer too.

How bedtime stories can be a calming influence


An additional benefit of reading to children, even those that can read for themselves, is that they learn more advanced cognitive skills like language and emotion and logic skills. This has been linked to lowering stress levels, simply through children listening to and interacting with the words they’re hearing.

We don’t need to tell you how busy life can get – from nursery and school drop offs, to extra-curricular activities, parties, homework, and seeing friends and family – and both adults and children can feel the effects. A nighttime ritual like reading for 15 minutes before settling off to sleep can provide an important comfort anchor that signals relaxation. This signal can trigger a calm state of mind and result in a more relaxed little one, happy in the knowledge they get to enjoy a daily moment of calm.

Bedtime stories for parent-child bonding

The best bit of reading to your little ones though? Most parents would agree that it’s the special and unique bonding time – those few minutes just before they drift off to sleep, when they’re safe and warm in their beds with nothing to distract them except the story you’re reading together. It’s a moment in time that you’ll look back on with fond memories and the stories you read to them will stay with them well into adulthood.

Our favourite bedtime story books include:


The Gruffalo

Guess How Much I Love You

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

The Star Tree

Owl babies

How to catch a star

Harry Potter

The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe

Gangsta Granny

Chipmunks supports bedtime stories

We love nothing more than childrens’ over-active imaginations sparked by stories of adventure, mystery, friendship, and superheroes, which is why we’ve teamed up with Roald Dahl’s Marvellous Children’s Charity and their super friendly mascot, Marvin the Marvellous Crocodile.

Children under the age of 12 are being invited to take part in our extra-special competition to create an adventure story about Marvin the Marvellous Crocodile, and one of Chipmunks’ popular slipper characters.

The lovely people at Roald Dahl’s Marvellous Children’s Charity will pick the winning story, which will be published into a printed, one-off book especially for the winner. The story will also be sent to the marvellous Roald Dahl nurses around the country, and will be read to seriously ill children in need of a special bedtime story to cheer them up.

If you would like to enter and to find out more about the competition, including deadline dates, full prize information and entry details, visit


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