Reading is one of the best things a child can do for themselves. Not only will it help them academically, but it will also help them throughout their entire lives, giving them access to a vast collection of knowledge and skills. Vocabulary, critical thinking skills, attention span, and more are all tied to reading. However, not all kids are keen to pick up a book right away. Thankfully, there are ways to encourage a love of reading in your child from an early age.
Read with them
Reading with your child sets a good example while also associating reading with something enjoyable (i.e. spending quality time with you, their parent). The more often you read with your child at an early age, the more likely reading will become a habit.
Let them pick the books that they want to read
One of the reasons why kids dislike reading is because they dislike the subject that they’re reading. If they’re given books to read that they think are boring, they’re less likely to crack open those books in the first place. Instead, take your child to the library or your local bookstore and let them pick out the book that they want.
Make sure the books aren’t too easy or too difficult
Even if your kids are reading books that they find interesting, if the material is too difficult for them to read, they might get frustrated with it. Conversely, if it’s too easy, they’ll likely get bored with it. Make sure that whatever book your child picks out is roughly at, or just slightly above, their reading level. If you’re not sure what they’re reading level is, consult your child’s teachers.
Another technique that parents use to encourage reading is reading buddies. This is where stuffed animals are used to help children learn how to read. Children can read books to their stuffed animals, or parents can use stuffed animals to hook their kids into a particular book.