Every parent wants his or her child to read more. Reading is the key to doing well in school, professionally, and generally projecting an image of intelligence.
Studies have even shown that, the better the reading skills, the better the math aptitude, as well! Reading also leads to better writing and speaking skills. Starting young is key, but how do you encourage your child to read more? That can be a challenge.
Reading and learning specialist, Ann Glass, has some tips for getting young child interested in opening a book…
Tayyab Babar from Lifehack offers these 10 tips for encouraging a child to read more.
1. Develop children’s oral language.
Don’t just read, interact! Ask your child to read a story to you, or vice versa. Ask them to pick their favorite parts, or favorite words.
2. Read a bunch of stories every day.
The more they read, the more it becomes a part of regular life.
3. Ensure lots of reading opportunities around the house.
If there is lots to read (at their level) around the house, they’ll do better on standardized tests, studies show. Make sure there are books, magazines and more to read. Fill the shelves!
4. It’s not just books.
Encourage learning to read menus, movie marquis, signage, game instructions, weather and sports reports, etc.
5. Use technology to increase self-esteem.
Learning to operate a computer, smart phone or other high-tech device at an early age can improve reading skills, though they must be limited, and monitored, by parents.
6. Let them use e-readers.
E-readers or reading apps can adapt to the individual needs of a developing child. They can also make reading a more exciting experience.
7. Let them choose what they read.
Always best to let a child choose what to read or to be very subtle in suggesting titles, to encourage independence and build preferences.
8. Help them choose age-appropriate books.
Children don’t always know what books are appropriate for their level of development. Use a guiding hand to get them where they belong, and don’t be afraid to challenge them.
9. Make use of gadgets and creative apps.
Your smartphone or tablets can be used to install useful reading apps where kids can have safe spaces for reading without parents worrying about what they might come across online. Parents are able to choose what their children can access, as well as how long they can do different activities with timer features.
10. Show interest in your child’s reading.
Give them love, praise and attention when they read.
More reading encouragement
In an article recently posted on CNN.com, Common Sense Media’s Regan McMahon also advises to get your child interested in a book series (Anybody remember Tom Swift?), or become a fan of specific author or genre of books, like scary stories, mysteries or comedy. Devotion like this can entice kids to actually read more.
We need to do more
As parents these days, we tend to drift off into our own little worlds, often centered around our smartphones. We need to open our minds, be aware of our immediate surroundings, and pour attention on our children. After all, we want them to do the same for us someday. Don’t we?