Reading is essential in education and in the modern world, where the majority of communication takes place over email or text-based messaging systems. For this reason, the ability to read for comprehension and communicate effectively is crucial and should be taught at a young age.
Encouraging children to read can be challenging, but finding ways to make their reading experience enjoyable can influence their reading success. Try these methods to encourage your child to read and build a successful foundation for a lifelong love of reading.
Encourage your child to read familiar books.
It is perfectly fine if your child wants to read the same book for the 100th time. Reading the same material again and again builds speed and accuracy, which can instill confidence and encourage them to keep reading.
Make time for reading.
Set aside time throughout the day when your child can read. Allow reading to be relaxing and enjoyable rather than forced.
Create a reading nook.
Create an area where your child can settle down and spend time with a good book. A special, cozy place can be all the encouragement your child needs to read.
Make sure the reading material isn’t beyond your child’s reading abilities.
Help your child find books that aren’t too hard or too easy. Kids have better reading experience when they read books at the right level. Have your child read a few pages aloud so you can determine if the book is appropriate for the skill level. Consider asking questions about what they read to assess their reading comprehension. A tool like Accelerated Reader’s Bookfinder can also be helpful to determine a book’s reading level.
Read aloud with your child.
Take turns reading aloud during story time. If you have younger children, encourage your older one to take on the responsibility of reading to them. As your child grows as a reader, you can gradually read less and let your child take the lead more often.
Don’t leave home without something to read.
Bring a book or magazine with you any time your child is with you. Whether it’s riding in the car or waiting for doctor appointments, stories help keep your child occupied.
Offer special incentives to encourage your child’s reading.
Allow your child to stay up an extra 15 minutes if a reading goal is met or offer to replace your child’s regular chore with time for reading.
Books don’t have to be the only thing your child reads.
Encourage your child to read more than just books. Take advantage of spur-of-the-moment opportunities for reading. When you are out to eat, let your child read the menu. When you are driving in the car, let your child read the roads signs. Also, don’t forget to allow magazines and age-appropriate websites about topics that interest your child.
Play a word game.
Use word games to help your child become more aware of the sounds in words. Phonological awareness is a key reading skill. Working on it helps children learn to recognize and work with sounds in words and become stronger readers overall.