Children’s Literacy: 5 Ways to Get Your Kids to Love Reading
Reading books to kids, being creative when it comes to books, using technology to make reading fun — all of these activities help get kids to love reading. Did you know that more than 88 percent of children who have difficulty reading at the end of first grade display similar difficulties at the end of fourth grade? And, three-quarters of students who are poor readers in third grade will remain poor readers in high school. Research also indicates a growing number of children are becoming apathetic readers. Some of these children are choosing not to read; not because it's difficult, but because they don't want to read.
5 Ways to Get Your Kids Excited About Reading
- Listen carefully to your child when he/she shows an interest in something. For example, if he/she tells you about a cool animal on the Discovery Channel or a new student who is coming to school from Japan, make a mental note. Find a book about that “hot topic” and remember: a child’s interest fades quickly, so don’t wait too long to get a book!
- Allow choice to be a strong motivator. Let your child choose some books that he/she likes. Reading Rockets, a website dedicated to teaching kids to read and helping those who struggle, offers a themed book list that you can browse to find the best book for your child.
- Don't make reading difficult! Let your child read a few pages to you. If he/she misses five words out of 100, the book is too difficult for him/her to read by himself. Choose another book, or read it to your child. In addition to a wealth of books, your library most likely will have tapes and CDs of books, musical CDs and tapes, movies, computers that you can use, and many more resources. You also might find books in languages other than English, or programs to help adults improve their reading. You can also pick up some reading tips on the U.S. Department of Education's website.
- Model reading in your home. Set a time when the whole family reads together. Each of you can share something about what you read.
- Set small goals with your child, such as reading one page every night. Use chart paper and chart the nights she reads. He/she can see for herself if she’s achieving her goal. Do an internet search for a template to use or you can make your own reading log.
How do you get your kids excited about reading? How do you make reading fun for your kids?
Photo courtesy of Flickr.
Desiree Allen is a thirty-something single parent with two children. A native of Denver, Colorado, she lived there until 2009, when she moved across the country to northern New Jersey with her kids. She is doing her best to avoid ‘picking up’ a Jersey accent, but she’s not making promises that she won’t eventually start sounding like some of her new friends. You can find her blogging at Writing to Sanity and tweeting @writingtosanity.
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