The value of reading should be pretty well-established by now. But sometimes our kids need a little reminder, especially amidst all the distractions of our modern lives. With this in mind, we asked Canadian parents how they keep their children interested in reading. Here are the 6 top tips they came up with that can help you raise a strong reader too:
Storytelling is a great way to get kids interested in reading. They may already know a story book, so what's more fun than retelling the story with props like puppets? Helping a child appreciate the link between reading, writing and performance might also get them excited about exploring new and different books!
2. Involve Your Kids in the Process
It’s perfectly fine to make suggestions, but allowing your children some amount of input helps to make them feel like they are in control of their lives. Let your children pick their own books from the library to read and supplement with your suggestions as necessary.
3. Set Goals
Just as with anything else, setting goals is a great way to help your child track their own progress. To motivate your kids to read more, set goals and rewards. A simple reward structure like minutes of study/homework/reading equals time they can spend doing other activities they enjoy. The more your little ones read, the sooner they’ll realize how much they love it.
4. Bedtime Reading Routine
Instill a reading routine like reading before bedtime and don’t break it. Kids need consistency and they will start enjoying that routine and look forward to their reading time. You can begin by reading stories to your children and then, probably sooner than you think, your kids can pick up the slack and start reading by themselves.
5. Visit the Library
Remember those old, dusty buildings that have a lot of reading material inside? Well, they are still there! It might be hard to imagine going to a library these days, but most people will young children can tell you that kids still think the library is a magical place. Try making a trip to the library a weekly and fun family activity. Follow it up with ice cream or a special treat!
6. Set a Good Example
Always make sure that you set a good example by reading a lot of books, magazines and newspapers. This way, children will see that an adult reading is normal and they will attempt to mirror your behaviour. Having lots of books around that are easy to access is a great way to encourage them too!
Looking for ways to encourage your child to read more? Pick up some great books from Kumon’s Recommended Reading List.