From improved writing skills to the development of humor, reading has countless benefits for a child. Books can become the best form of entertainment for your little one, and reading is a gift that keeps on giving back. However, in today’s technological era, children tend to be more interested in playing games or watching television. That being said, books are in no way obsolete. They’re still one of the best learning sources for people of all ages, and there are no negatives to becoming a lifelong reader. We’ve compiled a handy list of tips and tricks for you to cultivate reading habits in your kiddos!
10 Read Bedtime Stories With Them
In order to start a reading habit, it’s important that your child looks forward to it. One of the best ways to incorporate fun reading into a kid’s daily life is to always read bedtime stories. Once your kiddo is old enough to recognize a few words, make sure to ask them to join in!
It’s a fun and interactive experience to take turns reading pages and exploring new stories. Eventually, you can start asking your child to read the story while you sit by their bed as an attentive audience. Not only will this boost your child’s love of reading, but it will also help their self-confidence at school!
9 Bring Reading To Life
Especially with young children, visualization is key to holding their interest. There’s no better way to get your child to fall in love with reading than to bring their stories to life! Plan your weekend trips around the books your child has been reading, and surprise them as a treat. For example, if your little one read The Three Little Pigs recently, you can take them to a local farm to see some critters in real life. Museums, parks, and festivals are other great options that often align with children’s books. Taking your children on these adventures will not only encourage them to read more often, but it also serves to enrich their experiences!
8 Go To A Public Library
Although public libraries are not as popular due to the expansion of the digital era, they’re still an amazing resource for your child to experience. In addition to being the home of thousands of books, local libraries will frequently have events specifically aimed at promoting reading habits in children. With the holiday season coming up, there will be many opportunities to get your child involved with reading at a library. From reading scary stories for Halloween to making hand-turkeys with the titles of favorite books on them, your child will have a blast and learn to love reading at the same time!
7 Find Genres Of Interest
If you want to get your kids to love reading, you need to start them off with the right genres for a long-lasting good impression. The best way to approach this is to simply allow your child to pick out books that look interesting to them, either at a bookstore or a library.
With younger or more indecisive children, you can make the choices for them. Picture books with bright colors and interesting images are always a safe bet for toddlers, while you should focus on humor and comedy for older children. Giving them a laugh to begin their journey will help them fall in love with books in the long term!
6 Try Out Reading With A Buddy
Often, kids will have more of an incentive to complete tasks when they’re given a buddy system. In the case of reading, children love the idea of showing their skills to younger siblings or a younger friend from school. Try to have them read a simple book to their younger companion, and you’ll be surprised by the results! Not only will both children improve their vocabulary and reading level, but it’s also great bonding time! If you have small children, it would also be a good idea to find them an older reading buddy. There’s no better way to get them excited about reading time than to give them a friend!
5 Start Out Short And Sweet
No matter the age of your child, there will be a variety of shorter books with the same reading level for them to start out with. If they seem hesitant about reading, try to lower the word count of the books and find selections that feature short stories and lots of pictures instead. For example, a book of jokes would be a great selection for children of all ages. You can ask them to tell you the jokes they read about, and there’s no commitment of chapters or lengthy plots that might seem intimidating. Another great option to start your kids on is comic books, as the creative drawings and plotline will get your kids to fall in love with reading.
4 Try Out Audiobooks And Interactive Reading Apps
Sometimes, it may be to your benefit to give in to the wonders of technology. If your child isn’t interested in paper copies of books, you should look into reading apps and audiobooks on a phone or tablet! Many apps (such as Sight Words) feature a plethora of games and visuals that will turn reading into an exciting adventure for your child. Furthermore, audiobooks are a great way for struggling readers to fall in love with books without having to strain their eyes or mind. Although you should never rely solely on audiobooks or apps, they are a great way to spark your child’s interest and get them to redouble their efforts to read!
3 Create A Cozy Reading Nook
Although some people can read in a crowded market, most children have a very short attention span and need a comfortable, quiet environment in order to be absorbed into a book. Therefore, it will be in your best interest to invest in a cozy reading nook at home. If you have a window seat, for example, you can turn it into a reading nook by adding cushions, shelving space, and a comfortable blanket. The location by the window is also perfect for getting some natural light! No need to worry if that isn’t possible, though. A reading nook can also just be a comfy armchair, a nice corner of the couch, or a rocking chair on the porch. The most important thing is to keep everything comfortable, relaxing, and quiet.
2 Get Them Interested In Series
Just like movie series, book series are difficult to put down once you get interested in the plot. For the record, binge-reading Harry Potter will be much more educational than binge-watching all eight seasons of the Game of Thrones. If you want your little one to be a bookworm, the best way to get them hooked is to introduce series. There are countless options no matter what grade they’re in, and most of the series are also highly educational. To list some examples, Magic Tree House, Junie B. Jones, or Fly Guy are great options for elementary students. If your kid is in middle school or above, you can have them check out Harry Potter, Percy Jackson and the Olympians, or Lord of the Rings.
1 Choose Books That Correlate To The Events And Passions In Their Life
Finally, you need to take all the chances you have to incorporate reading into your child’s life. In order to form a habit, kids will need to be exposed to all kinds of interesting and helpful books. Sometimes, getting them a book will seem obvious. For example, you can gift them with a book of ghost stories for Halloween, or The Polar Express for Christmas. However, there’s so much more you can do based on the happenings of your child’s life. If you’re going on vacation, get them a book about some of your destinations. If you’re getting a new puppy, buy them a training manual to go along with it!