How to encourage children to read

Posted on Feb 10, 2016

When asked about the concerns they have regarding their children’s education, most parents say that they wished their kids would read more. This is indeed one of the biggest concerns, not only at the family level, but also at an educational one. Kids are naturally curious and they have the ability to pick up new skills quickly, but the fact that they associate books with school and homework makes it very difficult for parents and teachers to prove that books can actually be quite fun. Even if your child is already in school, you should always try to encourage reading, because this helps expand the imagination, enhance linguistic skills and improve literacy. If your child is not too receptive and you notice that daily reading activities make him or her feel bored, fatigued or irritated, you shouldn’t insist, because negative emotions will intensify. Instead, think of a smart strategy that makes reading seem fun and combine reading with things that your little one already loves.

Choose picture books

Most people who are avid readers see books as a pleasant past time activity, forgetting that a child who has barely learned how to read will find nothing attractive in intimidating volumes that count hundreds of pages. Books for children should have a friendly, inviting format. There is a good reason why children picture books have their separate shelf in libraries. They have enough text to encourage reading, but they also have representative drawings that simplify the process of learning new words and improve the overall reading experience. Kids are more likely to be attracted by fun, colorful drawings than by endless lines of text, so make sure you pick up a few picture books that they like. In the past years, publishing houses have created interesting book designs that include 3D images, pop-up books, stickers and other such elements. One of the biggest benefits of such books is that they combine learning with games, so your child can pick up new words and notions by associating them with fun activities. Interactivity is also important and you can find some books that combine reading with coloring, picture associations and writing.

Experiment with eBooks

When they first appeared, eBooks were faced with a lot of hate, mainly because people imagined that they would mark the end of printed books. They do not aim to do that and they very well complement traditional books. Children eBooks can be a much awaited helping hand in encouraging your child to read more, because children are really drawn towards technology and offering them an eBook reader instead of a normal book could make them more receptive. In time, he or she will learn to accept that literature is quite fun and will have an open attitude towards reading in general. With so many genres out there, it is impossible not to find something that your kid loves. For example, if he or she is still very small, you can buy short animal stories and then make a transition towards abridged adventure novels and then full books.