As a teacher and a mom, reading with kids is part of my daily routine. Part of the reason I became a teacher was to teach children how to read. I have been an avid reader my entire life. It is my absolute favorite hobby. However, a love of reading is not something you are born with. The love of reading is something that must be nurtured and cultivated right from the start.
Tracey Clayton is back today with a fabulous guest post on how to make your kids fall in love with books. This is a love that will last a lifetime. There are so many benefits for developing an early love of reading. Besides the academic advantages, developing a love of books and reading will help your child’s psychological, social, and emotional development! Read on to find out how to get your little ones reading today!
The Importance of Reading: How to Make Your Kids Fall in Love with Reading
Guest Post By: Tracey Clayton
Getting kids to love reading has never been easy since it’s an activity that requires their full attention and commitment. Nowadays, however, making your kids fall in love with reading is even harder because there are so many distractions and easily consumable ways of having fun. Despite all of this, teaching your kids to love books is doable – you just have to put a little bit of effort in it and be clever. Here’s how to make it work.
Create a Wordy Environment
Falling in love with books and written word starts at a very early age – your kids don’t need to know how to read to realize how important reading is. On the other hand, the sooner they learn to read the sooner they’ll fall in love with books, so make sure you create a somewhat wordy environment in your home. Decorate their room with an alphabet rug, let them eat alphabet soup, or get some fridge magnets shaped like letters. This is an indirect, sneaky way to create a “reading environment” and make your kids comfortable around letters, regardless of their age.
Give Them Reading Tasks
If your kids are old enough to read but not very fond of books you can start small by giving them discrete reading tasks in everyday life. For instance, when you take them grocery shopping, let them read and cross the items off the shopping list. Or, if they like helping you with cooking, ask them to read you a recipe. This way they’ll not only practice and perfect their reading skills but also develop a habit of communicating through written word and acknowledge the magic of it.
Assemble a Reading Nook
Just like grownups, kids love having their little spot where they can snuggle up and read without being interrupted. The truth is that creating a reading nook can be a great way to make your kids love their books, even more, so make sure you dedicate a corner of their room to this cause. A comfy little chair, one of those cute yet cheap rugs, and a bookshelf filled with their favorite titles might be more than enough to keep the little ones amused. Don’t forget lighting – a simple task lamp will provide your kids with enough light to read before bedtime without the fear of damaging their sight.
Be a Role Model
Kids learn by example, meaning that they will mimic their parents, siblings, and other people around them until they grow up. This is something you can use to make them fall in love with reading – by being a good role model to them. Of course, they shouldn’t just copy you but create their own taste but a little nudge can’t do any harm. Since kids tend to do what their siblings do, it’s enough to make your oldest one love reading and others will follow. Make your oldest one a reading leader and soon, they’ll be fighting over who gets to read the new book first.
Start a Reading Journal
Nowadays, there are plenty of apps to keep track of your reading process and habits but, with your kids, try to keep the old fashioned way and make them write down books they’ve read, they’re reading right now, and they wish to read in the future. Take them to a craft store and supply them with colorful papers, pencils, stamps, and other crafty material, so they can make their own journal. They can even write little reviews of the books they read or quotes they liked and have so much fun. Do something similar for your own reading habits and see for yourself how entertaining it can be!
Teaching your kids to understand the importance of reading can be a wonderful and fulfilling activity for both of you. Give it time and don’t be desperate if it doesn’t work right away – be persistent and your kids will start adoring books, sooner or later. It’s never too late to become a reader, anyway!
About the Author:
Tracey Clayton is a full-time mom of three girls. She feels she knows a thing or two about raising happy, healthy and confident kids, and offers helpful advice in hers parenting articles. Her motto is: “Live the life you love, love the life you live.”
Be sure to read Tracey’s other guest posts here, Fun and Frugal Crafting Ideas You Can Do With Your Kids and 5 Ways I Have Fallen in Love with Myself After Giving Birth. Or check out her article on Rebuilding Body Confidence After Pregnancy.