It’s well documented that a child who loves to read regularly performs better academically and has a larger vocabulary than those who read less often or only occasionally.
In addition, reading increases focus and concentration and is a relationship-building activity that strengthens the parent-child bond.
Learn how to raise a child who loves to read with these easy guidelines you can start applying at home today.
Follow Their Interests
Nobody knows your children’s interests better than you do. Use that strategic advantage to help them create strong reading habits. There are books and magazines on any topic you can think of. From card-collecting to role-playing games and dance, the publications are out there. Take them out from the library or buy them, and let your children have fun reading them.
If you want to develop lifelong reading habits in your children, forget about pressure. Don’t force your children to finish every book they start. Offer your help, but don’t judge the books they read, or their reading habits. On the contrary, praise their efforts and let them use trial and error to find the books they enjoy and the conditions under which they prefer to read.
Reward is essential to create new habits. Strive to be encouraging and reward your children’s efforts. This reward doesn’t have to be material, or monetary. Taking interest in your children’s reading habits, reading with them, discussing their ideas and showing your respect for their opinions are effective emotional rewards.
Keep it Fun
Reading doesn’t have to be a serious activity, or even a solitary one. As we have suggested before, you can set up a family book club. Other fun activities you can consider are:
- Quiz games
- Drawing the characters or situations of the book as your children imagine them.
- Ask yourselves how a character from the book would handle a situation you face at home.
Set the Example
While rewards are important, your example carries even more weight when it comes to raising children who love to read. You are a role model for your children, and they look to you for examples of how to navigate life. Read at home, both for pleasure and to grow professionally. Your example will be worth a thousand words for your children.