Everyone knows the importance of reading, but encouraging our children to read can be a difficult task. As a parent, it is imperative that you help your children enjoy reading and indulge their love of literature. While you will have to focus a lot of time and energy into doing so, it will be very rewarding in the long term.
Kids often see reading as something that they have to do in school, and as such, it feels very much like a chore when they get home. The key is to ensure that children see reading as a leisure activity, not as a chore that is forced upon them. As they are often forced to read at school, reading for pleasure can seem like an unknown entity and as such they lose their passion for reading. As a parent, it is your job to ensure that they find a balance between reading for pleasure and reading for work.
One of the most effective ways, as a parent, that you can encourage your child to love literature is to read aloud to them. The easiest time to implement reading into their routine is to do so at bedtime. Once you have settled them into bed, take out a book and read aloud to them. Get your child to engage with the text and the illustrations. What is more, you will need to project your voice in an enjoyable way. This may mean putting on silly voices and adopting the guise of the various characters within the book. While you may feel a little silly at first, your kids will love it.
There is a fantastic range of children’s books available online, and on the high street, so much so that you will be spoilt for choice. Try to purchase books that are aimed at your child’s age range. What is more, the books that you purchase should be a reflection of their own personal tastes and likes. If your little boy is fascinated by dinosaurs, then purchase storybooks that tell the tales of dinosaurs. They are sure to be engaged with the story if the book is suited to their personal tastes.
It may be advisable to seek out the services of your local library. Some libraries hold mother and toddler groups, where your child can interact with other children of a similar age. What is more, once they have engaged with peers of their own age, they will be more interested in listening to the stories unfold. Getting your kids interested in reading need not be an arduous task, it should be an enjoyable leisure activity that they can actively engage with.
One of the most important things that you can do as a parent is “practice what you preach.” This means that if you are encouraging your children to read, then you should be reading too. Children often want to emulate their parents, so if they see you reading for pleasure, then they will be interested in doing so too. After all, they want to be seen as ‘grown ups,’ not children.