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We’ve heard this a gazillion times but nothing is as fundamental to your child’s education as learning to read is. Two decades ago, parents and teachers didn’t find it as challenging as is it today to instill and encourage the love for reading in children. But with the turn of the new millennium that brought about technology, smartphones, and games, reading is a skill a lot of children struggle with, causing them to regress in their education.
Moreover, reading doesn’t only bring about academic benefits – it’s also a handy skill for lifelong success in addition to helping your child develop his/her vocabulary, enhance stronger analytic thinking and increase their attention span. The key to encouraging your child to read is when parents read to their kids at a very early age. This gives your child a first-hand experience of the joys of books and stories that will inspire and motivate them to want to read as they grow older too.
However, this isn’t always the case and a lot of kids can be averse to the very idea of reading. While this may seem to be very upsetting for parents, worry not! Listed below are five proven strategies that will motivate your child to read.
Yes, this does sound very simple and basic but if you want to instill a love for reading in your child, then you need to set an example too. As a parent, you are your child’s role model and your kids emulate you. Do read a little more than you’ve been reading lately and when you read in front of your kids, it shows your child and indirectly teaches them that reading is important. If mummy and daddy do it, the child will follow in the same footsteps as well. And while you’re at it, encourage your child to bring along his/her own book and join you in your reading session.
Children who grow up with books around them start to think of books as their friends in their pursuit of adventure. And we know how curious kids can be so when there are books available around them, it could pique their curiosity and make them want to try reading as well. Also be aware of what interests your child. Is it sports, arts, comics, animals or adventure? And based on that, surround your child with books that would interest them.
Children aren’t born readers and while most of them enjoy it, other children to find it boring, frustrating and even difficult sometimes. So if your child experiences anything like this, then take a step back and identify what your child is actually struggling with. Talk to your child’s teacher if necessary and more importantly, talk to your child and try to instill a love for reading starting right from the basics. Allow them to start off with one page a day and slowly progress as they go on.
A lot of children find reading tedious because the very idea of picking up a book sounds like something educational and not fun for them. This is why you should teach your child that reading is more than just books. Encourage them to practice reading movie names, menus, road signs, package instructions and so on to show them that reading is everywhere.
Children love doing group activities and the same applies for reading as well. Set up book clubs or reading groups or circles as this encourages your child to interact with other and also share the story they’re reading with their friends. This activity can enhance your child’s comprehension and make reading a lot more enjoyable.
The bottom line is that reading should be made fun and not treated as a chore. Use the above-mentioned tips to encourage reading and play an active role in motivating your child and teaching them that reading is a gloriously magical experience.