Books are hugely important to me. I am an avid reader and my dream is for my sons to love books as much as I do. I read to my boys as often as I can. If they ask me to read to them, I stop whatever I am doing to read. No matter what, they know if they want me to read, I will read.
My husband and I read to our kids before bed EVERY night. It is such a satisfying routine and I hope it will be a routine that will last a life time.
My oldest son is six years old and in grade one. It has been such an exciting year to see him begin to read. The last month his reading has improved by leaps and bounds.
He has to read a book for homework four nights a week. He does not enjoy doing homework and I have been afraid that reading would become a chore for him.
I love to use to the website GoodReads to log the books that I read and have set myself a challenge of reading 40 novels this year. I read 30 last year. I love to add a new book and check it off once I have finished reading. I thought perhaps my son would enjoy that as well.
After a perusal of online reading logs for kids, I settled on Biblionasium. I quickly set up an account for my son and showed him how he could type in the books he reads and then see the cover photo show up on his online book shelf.
He was instantly excited to try it and chose two books that he wanted to read right off. He has NEVER asked to read before. He loves me to read to him but he has never wanted to try to read his own books. I was so excited!
He worked so hard to read his books and was so happy to log them on his online book self.
I scoured our house to find as many level/step 1 readers as I could find. I wanted to make sure I was prepared for whenever he asked to read. I find it is very important to have the right level of books for kids when they are just learning. I know for my son if the books are too long or too hard, he gets frustrated and doesn’t want to finish.
He had chosen a couple of level 2 readers which were a little too difficult but we just used a book mark and took a couple of sessions to finish it.
I also asked him if he would like to make a reading goal and get a treat once he reached it. He decided that after he read 10 books he could have a bowl of chips.
Confession Time: He completed his goal of 10 books in the morning and got to eat a bowl of Tostitos chips before breakfast.
This week he has also got to stay up half an hour later at night to read his books to me. I had thought he would be too tired to read at night but it is actually a great time to do it. It is a nice quiet time to cuddle up together since his younger brother is already in bed. He also gets to feel like a big boy and stay up late. (7:30pm). I want him to feel that reading is fun!
How did your children develop an interest in reading?
Please share your tips to encourage child readers in the comments.