Every now and then, it‘s a good idea to do a little thinking “outside of the box”. Maybe your little one has lost interest in reading or just refuses to try a different genre of book. Book swaps and book clubs are a perfect way to do something a bit unique in order to encourage your child to read and/or expand her interests. So let’s explore a couple of ways you and your kiddo can have some fun with books!

Book Swaps
You know there might be a reason those libraries have stuck around all this time – books are meant to be shared! If your home is like mine, you have several shelves of books in the house that have already been read. After all, it just seems wrong to throw away a perfectly good book simply because you have finished it! Why not consider hosting a book swap party in order to get those used books back into circulation? Start by contacting parents with kids around the same age as yours. Come up with the number of books each child should bring (gently worn – not falling apart please!) and how you plan to conduct your swap. Perhaps you could number each book and randomly draw numbers to decide who wins it. Or you could do a “book walk” (think cake walk for books). When the guests arrive, have each child give a brief summary of their books and why they enjoyed them. Consider giving a prize to whoever delivers the best sales pitch! When they see how much their friends enjoy a certain book, they might be willing to give it a try. There are several creative ways to conduct a book swap. Talk with your child about what they think would be fun and then throw the best book swap party ever! Your guests will be begging for another one!

Book Clubs
Book clubs are not for adults only. Kids love coming together to discuss a common topic just as much as grown-ups. Granted, a book club with younger guests might be a bit rowdier and you will probably serve hot chocolate instead of coffee – but that’s OK! A book club party has endless possibilities. For instance, you can have the children each write down a question they would like to ask their friends about the book and then have the kids share their answers or opinions with one another. Another possible discussion starter could involve having guests pick previously written questions randomly from a hat. Maybe you could have children dress up as a character from the book and make a group photo as a memento of the occasion. As long as you are imaginative with your plans and excited about the book, the kids are bound to have a blast! Hopefully, the children will leave asking what they need to read for the next meeting. Be sure to visit Red Apple Reading’s Pinterest board – Nothing But Books For Kids! – for some good book club titles.

Kids love to get together and hang out. So why not let their socialization occasionally revolve around books? The benefits and memories that these literary gatherings produce will be priceless!