What’s the most important trait you’d like to develop in your child? If you’re like most parents, intelligence is probably at the top of your list. Did you know that the benefits of reading to your child everyday are astonishing, as a parent, you have the power to boost your children’s learning potential simply by making books an integral part of their lives. Which is exactly why I have been reading to my child every single day since he was 6 months old, but there is a lot more to raising a reader than just reading everyday. According to Mom’s Magazine there are 10 ways to raise a reader and I agree with every last one of them…
Reading aloud with your child everyday for 20 minutes will help your child…
- Develop Deeper Empathy for others.
- Increases their vocabulary and builds background knowledge to create the ability to connect with the world.
- It stimulates the brain.
- Lengths their attention span.
- PROVEN to create academic success in school.
- Builds memories and fosters a love of learning and literacy.
Go to the Library
We go to our local library once a week to pick out new books to read, “little man” loves it. Just make sure when you go to the library you check their monthly announcements for programs or events they may be hosting and sign your child up even if it’s just a reading circle.
Read For Information (A life skill)
Encourage your child to read things all around such as product labels when shopping, the grocery list, and recipes. Show your child how to look up phone numbers and businesses by category and name. Read directions to a game together. When you make reading life applicable, you raise a reader.
Play Games Together
Games build thinking skills, memory, and sequencing skills which are all vital skills for reading comprehension. Play board games and card games. Do word searches together. Do hidden picture puzzles together. All these games increase visual discrimination, vocabulary, and attention span which lead to being able to read well.
Cook & Converse
Cooking together includes reading recipes and labels. Talk while cooking, eating meals together, and doing errands. Conversation is a major building block for creating language experience and building vocabulary. Both are necessary to be a good reader.
Praise your child for their reading accomplishments and reinforce good reading habits for future reading success. Even though my son is only 2 I try to allow him to read to me as well and I praise his efforts, especially if what he is describing is similar to the picture on a page in the book.
Create a Book Nook
Kids love to build forts and secret places. Help them create a fort (book nook). They can use a sheet to build a tent-like fort. They can use a cardboard box or laundry basket filled with pillows as a book reading boat. The ideas are limitless. Let them use their imagination and provide lots of baskets of books and magazines, and a little space.
Let your children see you read. Talk about what you are reading. I don’t enjoy reading long books, but I read lots and lots of articles on my phone or tablet. I read magazines. I read “how to” books. I read recipes. I tell my children that I know how to do things, because I read about it.
Give Books & Magazine Subscriptions as Gifts
I’m pretty sure I buy my son a book every time I go to a store that sells books!!! Its my favorite gift to him but recently I started him a magazine subscription with High Five magazine through Highlights.com. Check them out.
Create a print rich environment
Have books, magazines, and tablets with reading apps, comics, and newspapers available everywhere. (We even have a magazine rack in the bathroom.) Having reading materials everywhere makes them accessible and puts an emphasis on reading.
Bonus: The Benefits
- A stronger relationship with you.
- Academic Excellence.
- Basic Speech Skills.
- The basics of how to read a book.
- Better communication skills.
- Mastery Of Language.
- More Logical Thinking Skills.
- Acclimation to new experiences.
- Enhanced concentration and discipline.
- The knowledge the reading is fun.