The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more you learn, the more places you’ll go. ~ Dr. Seuss Click To Tweet
As a parent or guardian, one of the most important skills to nurture in children is reading. With the rise in smart technology over the last decade, it has become particularly important to deliberately make time to put all of the gadgets away and really sit down and take in a book. In case you’ve forgotten this, here are four ways of instilling a life-long love of books in your sons and daughters.
1) Consider Reading the Book Aloud, Even To Older Kids
Of course you’re reading aloud to your younger children, but it’s a habit that can get lost once they learn to read to themselves. Yet reading aloud to them, and having them read aloud to you, is not only a peaceful and positive interaction that will build your relationship well into their pre-teens, It’s also a great motivator for them to read more on their own. Often times they’ll end up picking up the book themselves and barrelling through it because they simply can’t wait to find out what happens next in Narnia or Hogwart’s. It’s also a great way to teach them proper pronunciation.
2) Pair Books with Fun Activities
After reading a particular book with your child, go the extra mile and take part in a fun activity that you know he or she enjoys. For example, after reading the popular “Eating Fractions” book, go to the kitchen and prepare some of the recipes. Be sure to kid them through the preparation process. By doing so, you will kill two birds with one stone; you will better their cooking skills and improve their comprehension, as well as developing the ability to apply what they read to real life scenarios.
3) Create a Book Club
Social skills will greatly help your child to grow and become successful in this fast-paced world. One of the best ways of encouraging them to spend more time reading books instead of sitting on the couch watching movies all day is by starting a book club. Allow them to invite friends to join the club and arrange to have reading sessions several times per week depending on your schedule. For this strategy to bear positive results, it is important to make sure that the adults do not dominate the sessions.
4) Get a New Definition of Reading
Reading should not only mean taking the time to go through the recommended schoolbooks. If the child is not drawn to those books, break the norm and read other materials such as baseball cards, graphic novels, joke collections, comic books, etc. Whatever works. All these materials will help you improve the child’s reading skills significantly.
5) Limit Usage of Electronics
While it is of course possible to access most books online these days, and simply read them on your smartphone, doing so won’t deliver the same results as grabbing a book and sitting down to read it with your kids. So, as mentioned in the beginning of this article, it is recommendable to limit usage of electronics in your home as much as possible. Create ‘no TV or gadgets hours’ for a specific time every day that there is NO deviating from, and instead encourage them to read books during this period. For instance, replace the cartoon movies with comic books.