Recent studies have show that reading for pleasure is more important to a child’s educational achievement than their family’s wealth or social class. The big question is- how to get children to believe this? How to convince them that the benefits of a good book outweigh the educational advantages of Fortnite, Fifa or the latest box set on netflix. How to encourage a child to read, is the question that weighs heavily on every parent or carer.
If parents aren’t avid bookworms it’s much more difficult to get children involved. Unfortunately many families are under the impression that once the ‘bedtime story‘ age has passed, reading with children should be confined to teachers and the school day. Schools are fully aware of the problems and are constantly looking for ways to encourage students of all ages to embrace the reading habit and make it a lifelong love affair.
Tips and Handy Hints
There are lots of handy hints out there for parents to encourage their children to read;
- getting older siblings to read to younger ones
- let them see the parents read
- asking them about the books they are reading at school and interacting with them
- as soon as they are old enough get them a library card
- personalise a book with the child and the child’s family as the featured stars
Some children are more interested in magazines and comics. Don’t be put off by this, because reading is reading, no matter what the content is. For older children it can be a good idea to watch a movie based on a book. By reading the book together you can discuss the pro’s and con’s and that all important question- which is better- the film or the book? Whatever way you come up with to help your child learn to love books, there is a ton of help out there. Make the most of it and give your child one of the best gifts around- A love of literature. Bill Gates has been quoted many times as saying
“I spend a lot of time reading”
and look where he got!!!