Making Reading FUN for kids this summer!


The key is to always make the reading experience fun and a time to look forward to. Reading or reading activities should never be perceived as a chore. What are things parents and child care providers alike should keep in mind to encourage reading?

Take advantage of weather by dangling the reading carrot in fun ways. Be adventurous and make it a game as to where you should read to your child and how. In warm weather, read next to a pond or lake, under a tree, by the pool, or even in the tree house. Be bold and carefree. One mother reads to her young child in their blow-up children’s pool in the backyard during the summer months. Another mom finishes the much-anticipated daily trip to the park in the spring or fall by reading a book before they leave. Cold months can mix reading activities by having books about snowmen, snowfalls, winter holidays, or sports such as ice skating.

Consider a reading series. There are countless book series tailor made for your child’s age, and a good experience with one means there is a high likelihood your child will enjoy others about the same characters. There are series on action heroes and princesses, popular characters such as Bob the Builder, the classic Dr. Suess collection, and about young heroes and heroines. There are series about beginning school for the first time or about going on vacation. Older children like series such as Harry Potter.

Build reading into the schedule. Parents can and should build a reading activity into the daily schedule. While evening or before-bedtime are popular times to read, reading after breakfast or before children go to an activity, sets a routine that most children embrace. Providers can set a daily story time and let parents know what book is being read and how it matches enrichment and learning activities for the week. Consider getting a bean bag for this special time.

Plan ahead with exciting books on vacation. Vacation is a prime time for reading enjoyment, when family is together and fun is in the plans. Reading is a great activity for around the pool, on the plane, or in the hotel room in the evening.

Build a reading activity into life’s planning. Children of all ages should learn the connection between reading and knowledge. If your family is adding a flower bed, have children read about how to prepare a bed and what flowers and shrubs are optimal for the area of the country and whether it is in sun or shade. Getting a new family pet? Read up on varieties of dogs, care required, and even stories about children and their pets first. Traveling somewhere? You guessed it, read all about your destination first and you and your children will have the added benefit of knowing more about the area when you arrive.

Involve the entire family. Studies show that moms have the tendency to read more to their children then dads, robbing both children and fathers of positive reading experiences. Make reading time with dad or grandpa a priority. Dads read books aloud with children differently then moms do, and children will flourish with the perspective and experience of both.

Ask for your child’s feedback. Evaluation and discussion is an important part of a positive book-reading experience. Ask your child simple questions, such as: Did you like the book? Why or why not? Who was your favorite character? What was your favorite scene? Did you like how it ended? Would you like to read it again someday? Don’t be surprised if your child wants to re-read the same book again! That means you did your job well and helped foster a love of reading.

Aug 02, 2011 | Category: Reading Tips | Comments: none


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