Why are bedtime stories good for our children
A famous Albert Einstein quote is: "If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales".
Reading is a fun activity most parents enjoy sharing with their children, even when they are babies and appear to understand very little. It has been scientifically proven that listening to the sound of our voice during as we narrate a story and while we speak, builds a unique bond between parents and children and facilitates their development. This way they become more mature, enrich their vocabulary from a very early age, develop their imagination and hopefully develop into smart and happy adults. In fact, according to research, children who listen to and read fairy tales every day from the age of three are much less likely to develop psychological disorders, compared to children who listen or read them less often. This is why more and more places with storytelling for children of all ages pop up in cities like Zurich. We can easily find them all in Momizen.
How fairytales make our children smarter
Enhance the imagination
Einstein's words help to describe the power of imagination and that children can create anything they like within their own mind: "Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination surrounds the world." Opening the door to this limitless world any time they need to, children aim high and without the fear of being held back. When they imagine a story, a struggle or a goal they are visualizing the achievement of accomplishing it, and thus experience their potential to achieve new things.
Distinguish the world around them from their own
As much as fairy tales help them make up stories in their minds, the repeated content of a story that describes life very different from their own help children understand the world, the countries, the different personality features of other people, animals, seasons, etc. This enhances their adaptability but also the ability to assimilate knowledge in the future.
Learn to love the good side
Usually when children hear a story, they identify with the hero. So while good always wins in the end in most fairy tales, they learn indirectly to separate the good from the bad and to identify with the path of the good of the story, until the well-known "and they lived happily ever after". Thus, the moral values within them are significantly strengthened.
Listening to a story like Cinderella or Sleeping Beauty, where successive events bring upheavals in the lives of the heroes, the children understand that there are solutions to all problems, that we do not allow anyone to define our lives but also that with courage and patience the problems are solved. This is how their critical thinking and problem-solving capacity develops.
Overcome their own fears
In fairy tales children hear about dragons, about evil witches, about monsters. They may be scared when they hear of them, but just the fact that in the end they lose, shows them that there is no reason to be afraid of the monsters, since even the scariest "enemy" can be defeated.
Prepare for future challenges
Fairy tales often talk about adult problems. It may sound too early to express it even indirectly, but just the fact that they hear that the world can be bad, that there is jealousy, envy, malice, and intense quarrels between people makes them more prepared to face similar problems in the real world.
Strengthen dialogue skills and critical thinking
Through the story telling, many questions arise in their minds, something that pushes them to make more questions and begins a dialogue (silent and in their minds many times) that enhances their critical thinking.
All these are reasons for all parents to want and to read as many fairytales as we can to our young ones.
Switzerland is ideal to introduce your children to activities in nature.
The mountains are stimulating and challenging all year round, and it is never too late to start exploring them.
The natural beauty and accessibility of the Swiss Alps make it easier to convince reluctant pre-teens and teens to join you for family time, even if you need to lure them with the instagram-friendly imagery. Melinda Taylor Schoutens mother of two, an educator and co-author of the book series, Fresh Air Kids Switzerland, has personally witnessed the power of nature immersion on her own children and shares what triggered her to follow this path while she speaks about the specific benefits of being outdoors. Read about her family's journey here.
For those that want to make a weekend trip of it, there are various mountain huts around the Swiss Alps already tested by Fresh Air Kids, that cater to the intrepid souls that are brave enough to trail the entire family along.
As the weather can be tricky, be sure to prepare the whole family with the right clothes and shoes. We created a list of the different types of hiking boots that cater to each terrain, so that your outdoor experience can be as fun as possible.
The school year is about to start very soon, and in some Cantons it already has, so here are some educational and fun ideas on how to enjoy the last free summer days with kids, around Zurich
0 – 6 Years old
4+ Years old
5+ Years old
Pre-teens & Teens
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