How to instill a love for reading in your children
Reading opens countless doors and will not only help them in their education, but will provide a place to retreat during times of stress. It will increase their imagination and ability to think outside the box. According to Dr.
Reading opens countless doors and will not only help them in their education, but will provide a place to retreat during times of stress. It will increase their imagination and ability to think outside the box. According to Dr. Laura Markham, “School performance correlates more directly with children's reading scores than any other single indicator.”
Problems generally arise around middle school, when children are busy with other activities, spend more time on the computer or television, and their love of reading drops off significantly. Studies show, in 1994, only 28% of middle-schoolers read at or above their proficiency level and only 2 percent read at an advanced level.
How can you help them love reading and make it a lifelong habit? Here are 11 ideas:
Read to them right from the beginning
Reading to them as an infant is a great start! Use books they can handle and chew on. They will develop a relationship with them. Don’t just read at bedtime. Be excited about taking reading breaks throughout the day.
Start taking them to the library early and look forward to it
Keep the library books in a special place at home. If they won’t sit through a “reading time," that’s fine. It’s important you get them there and that they develop a love of the library and think of it as a great place to go.
Read as often as you can
Put them in their high chair and let them look at books while you prepare the meal. Read as they relax in the bathtub, and don’t forget a good bedtime story.
Don’t push them to learn to read themselves
Sometimes the pushing becomes about you and not about them, and they may resent it. Enjoy your time reading to them and when they are ready, you’ll know it. They will express an interest, and you can take it from there.
Don’t stop reading to them once they know how to read
Read together. Alternate pages. Make it a special time together. My youngest daughter and I read together in bed every night until she went to college.
Make a family ritual out of reading
Set aside some time during the day or during the week when the TV, telephone, and computer are off. Encourage everyone in the family to join in and grab a good book.
Help them get to the next level
If you believe they are ready, begin reading a chapter book with them and then find a way to get busy. Give them the option to go on reading with or without you. If they choose to read by themselves, they are probably ready; if not, drop back down to an easier read.