Encouraging Children to Read for Pleasure


256px-Children_reading_The_GrinchIt is well documented that reading for pleasure has a significant impact on children’s educational success, but what can we do to encourage this at home?

The most important factor is choice. Some children are reluctant, and so it is important that they have this over what they can read – so they don’t feel like it is a chore. Choice and interest are highly related. It doesn’t matter what they read at first (as long as it is age appropriate) and some may prefer to start with magazines related to a hobby or interest, or perhaps a graphic novel. In the technological age we live in some children may prefer to read on a Kindle or other mobile device. Reading aloud with children is also a positive way to start encouraging a love of reading. Try to make the talk about reading light-hearted and fun, rather than deep questioning.

Children are also more likely to read independently in homes where books and reading are valued, so ensure that your child sees you reading, whatever it is. Encourage your child to read aloud to you as well, even if it is simply a recipe or a TV listing! Another tip is to set aside regular time each day just for reading.  Give book tokens for presents or other book-related gifts. Bookmarks can help encourage children by showing they can always stop and return when they want to.

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