We all know the importance of reading in the lives of our children. As parents, we’re constantly getting newsletters from our kids’ teachers containing reminders to read, how many words a minute should be read, what the story of the week is, etc. Reading is the gateway to several different types of learning. Without a strong reading foundation, our kid’s progress in other academic subjects will suffer. But what if your child doesn’t like to read? Don’t despair! With a little creative thinking, you can help your child catch the reading bug. Here are a few hints to help you get started:
Your child may not enjoy picking up a book, but what kid doesn’t like spending some one-on-one time with mom or dad? They’ll be so thrilled that you’re spending time together that the activity will be secondary. Also, some children are more social than others and don’t enjoy being alone. Setting aside fifteen to thirty minutes a day to read with your kid is sure to foster a love of reading. Plus, you and your child will get some good cuddle time in the process. It’s a win-win!
Reading doesn’t always have to be about hunkering down with a 200-page novel. Your child will likely become quickly bored or bogged down in a long story, but she might enjoy a reader’s theater script. To kids who enjoy action or have a bit of dramatic flair to their personalities, becoming the character in a story is a lot more attractive than sitting quietly and reading. Why not find a script and have everyone in your family choose parts to read? Or, gather a group of her friends and divide up parts. Even if you and your kid read several different parts, the silly voices and dramatic readings will make for a fun reading experience.
Become a Model
Ok, so maybe you aren’t supermodel material – not many of us are – but you can still have a career in modeling! To encourage your reluctant reader, model reading for pleasure yourself. Our children are constantly watching us and imitating what they see. I’m sure you can recount several instances of catching your child doing something they saw you do first. Sometimes that is not always a good thing! However, when our kids see us reading for pleasure, it sends the message that reading is enjoyable and worthwhile. Careful parents! Pouring over the spread sheets from work is not what we have in mind here. Reading for personal enjoyment is the key, and you probably need a break from work anyway!
How do you encourage reading at your house?