Books should make your child laugh and smile while it feels like they are transporting to another land. No matter if it is filled with dragons, a fairytale or a mystery, books should feel magical to your kids. Sometimes this does not come naturally to children. They may think that reading is boring or would rather watch TV. Luckily there are some ways you can change your child’s mind.
Here is how to help your children love to read.
Swap TV for Audiobooks
You may think audiobooks aren’t the same as traditional reading, but they can help your children read better. Hearing someone else read the book confidently exposes them to fluidity to have the ability themselves to read the text accurately, on pace and with expression.
Sometimes students are asked to read aloud in class which can cause anxiety about their performance. Audiobooks allow them to mirror the voice that is being read to them. Following along with the book can also help with learning new words and how to pronounce them correctly.
Be a Role Model
Your children tend to talk and act in the way that you do. If they grow up surrounded by books and a parent that loves reading them, it will be second nature for them to like reading too. When they see you reading, you can use this to spark interest. Talk to them about the book and point out moments of excitement. This will bring joy to both of you and spark their interest in having an experience with their books, and help your children love to read.
Stash Books Around the House
Surrounding your kids with books is the same as surrounding your kids with toys. Each of them is important, but providing the option in front of their face may entice them to pick it up and start on their reading journey.
They may even consider reading as a part of their playtime. Not all play has to look like running around with high energy. Reading is a solitary play allowing the child to learn motor and cognitive skills. Throw in new books here and there, so they get excited by seeing new titles.
Read the Book, then Watch the Movie
There are endless possibilities when choosing a book that has been turned into a movie. Pick something appropriate but exciting, depending on your child’s age and reading level. This is an excellent strategy for those that prefer watching shows over reading. It will motivate them to get through the book to watch the movie. It can even be done with books and TV series.
Let Them Choose Their Books
Kids tend to enjoy the books they chose themselves over the ones you try to get them to read. Start by asking your child about current interests and guide them towards books that align. Forming a connection with the books is essential, so they continue to read and enjoy them.
If your kids can’t pinpoint their interests, take cues from other things they enjoy to find a foundation on where to start. You can even try throwing something in that is out of the norm from what they would choose. When your child finds a book they love, ask them why they like it and pay attention to the genre.
Include Fun Rituals
Having a routine to read every night is a great way to unwind before bed. You can even read the book aloud if they prefer it. If they choose to read independently, you can make other routines like taking trips to the bookstore together or reading in the morning instead. Either way, it encourages self-discovery in reading.
Engaging with your children about what they are reading will make things more fun and enhance comprehension. It should not feel like you are checking in to ensure they are reading. You should genuinely care about each character and the storyline. Ask them to predict what happens next to tap into their creative mind.
Keep your questions focused on the story if you are reading with them. Putting too much emphasis on how words are pronounced or stopping to explain the meaning without them asking will take away from the experience.
Read Things Besides Books
There are many ways to have your child read with it feeling like they are reading. You can turn on subtitles when they are watching their favorite show and they may read them without realizing it. Magazines are another form of reading but on a different level. There are more pictures and topics to dive into that can cause your child to stay engaged.
If you want to do an activity together, cooking is a great way to involve reading while doing something fun. The ingredients and instructions allow a different form of reading and learning by following instructions. It can help them learn new things, like what ingredients are and learn cooking terms for the future.
The Bottom Line
When it comes to how to help your children love to read, it can be a process. If it doesn’t stick right away, don’t give up. One day they might fall in love with reading on their own with a couple of these practices.
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