6 Ways to Encourage Children to Read

by Captain Lyaf Yarr

Most grownups want to see their child reading not because of a homework assignment or whatnot but for the pure pleasure of it, but they don’t know how they can encourage their child to read. As a kid who likes to read here’s what I’ve come up with:

  1. Talk to your child about books. My mom reads all the time and so does my oldest sister. We talk about books, what we like to read, our favorite stories, and we get excited about movies based on books. My sister and I read the books before the movies and get all dressed up. It’s a lot of fun. So talk about books!
  2. Give books as gifts. I get book presents for my birthday, the holidays, just for being a good kid, etc. They’re either books I said I wanted or books that are getting a lot of good coverage by the media (it’s how my oldest sister first heard of Harry Potter, Twilight, and how I heard of the Hunger Games.) Popular books are a great gift idea.
  3. Match the reading level of your kid. You wouldn’t give a grade school kid Moby Dick to read or a high school kid the Spiderwick Chronicles. Find and share books that are appropriate, not books you necessarily want them to read.
  4. Talk to your child’s teacher. Sit down with the teacher in a parent/teacher conference and ask if they can help you interest your child in reading. Ask about how reading is done in class. Is there daily reading time? Pop-a-Top reading once a month? Trips to the school library biweekly? The more you know, the more you can do.
  5. Ask a librarian. If your child is interested in a certain author, subject, or series ask your librarian if he/she could suggest books and give recommendations for further reading. Librarians are huge resources when it comes to books! It’s their job.
  6. Subscribe to kid friendly magazines. Most kids are like me and enjoy reading magazines, so to encourage reading to them you can get them children magazines such as American Girl, Zoobooks, National Geographic Kids, Ranger Rick, Kids Discover, Highlights For Children, Your Big Backyard, Boys Life, etc. Pick something based on their age and their interests and you can’t go wrong.

Do you have any tips on helping parents/guardians encourage reading to their child or children? Comment and tell me.

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  1. Librarians are excellent! We got a lot of good book series ideas from ours didn’t we? 🙂

  2. Vicki Vance

    My 10 year old was grounded for the whole summer for shoplifting (repeat offense). I removed ALL ELECTRONICS; 1/2 hour a day on the phone for good behavior was her only contact with friends.

    She was bored silly, but the stacks of books I left her with became her salvation, and at 20, she is an avid reader.

    It seems harsh, but in this age of high stimulation, I think that the only way for some kids to get hooked on reading is to put them in an immersion environment for an extended period.

    Although my daughter still refers to that summer as proof that I was a “bad mother”, it broke her shoplifting habit, and gave her a treasure, so I am at peace.

    Vicki Vance

  3. I’m always looking for ways to get my son to read more. Thanks!

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