Encouraging Reading: Helping Kids Love Reading
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How to help your children read more
and to pick up a love of reading
Children learn by observing, which is one of the basic tenets of
so one of the first things you can do is to do some reading yourself.
If your children never see you reading anything (apart from your Facebook page) then they
might get the idea that reading is work and isnt really relevant.
It doesnt really matter what you read glossy magazines, newspapers, cookbooks,
instruction manuals and Mills & Boon romances might not be
but if you read these for fun in your leisure time, youre showing children that reading is something
that adults do for fun which means that they are more likely
to have a go themselves.
The next thing that you should do to help your children learn to love reading and books is to read to
Dont just limit yourself to alphabet books where you point out letters and make the sounds
and the more obviously educational books.
These are certainly helpful for children learning to read but you
need to read more than these books so that children get an idea of the end goal of reading: having
fun and gaining new information.
Bedtime stories are great tradition but there are other times that you can read with
Having a child sitting beside you or on your knee while you share a
picture book is great snuggle time and can be a good way for
you to unwind.
After a day of serious business meetings, sales talks and the like, being silly with a picture book can be a good way to put the heavy-
duty stuff behind you.
Go for something that requires sound effects from the parent
theres nothing like providing the right noises for Hairy Maclarys Caterwaul Caper or Walter the Farting Dog to push that difficult
meeting with the assistant manager into the back of your
Some parents wonder about favourite books and whether it is really extending a child if they want the same book over and
If your child recites the words of a favourite story with you or fills in
a missing sentence, is this an example of rote learning and will it be detrimental to their ability to learn to read using phonics?
Dont worry. A little rote learning, especially if its fun,
never hurt anybody and learning most or all of The Wonky
Donkey by heart helps your child to improve their memory skills
(and their vocabulary).
If youre in the mood for it, try changing a word or two to
provoke a reaction from your children as they correct you in
To promote a love of reading, you should have books available in the
house. In best Montessori principle, you should have a
designated spot for these books.
Bookshelves can be a bit hard for smaller hands to cope with,
especially if the books are wedged in fairly tightly this is a recipe for ripping a soft-cover picture
solution could be a book chest or a cupboard that is easier to get
things into and out of. You dont have to spend a fortune to collect
a good selection of good books.
Its amazing what turns up in the bargain bins at K-Mart, at school fairs and similar, at garage sales
and even at the library.
And you should also become members at the local library as soon as possible, if you arent
signed up already.
first card a child should own is a library card, although youll have to be the one to keep it until they get a bit more responsible and are
less likely to lose it (which is probably until they are old enough to go to t
he library solo).
library visits a regular fun outing. They are a great way to try out new titles if something turns out to be not quite your cup of tea, then back it goes to the
Have a separate place for library books as opposed to your books so you dont lose a library book in your book collection or return that copy of Winnie The Pooh
that Grandma gave your child for Christmas to the
library by mistake.
Also keep the printout of what youve taken out on the fridge or stapled into your diary or on the
calendar so you know exactly what youve taken out theres always one book under the bed
that runs the risk of being overlooked.
More Montessori Education topics at