For many children, bedtime stories were their very first introduction into the wonderful world of reading. As they grew older and began attending school however, reading somehow became a daunting task. And for children who aren’t interested in reading at all, they consider it as nothing but an arduous chore. Traditional reading methods, it seems, needs a little innovation in order to once again grasp the attention of young readers. There are several ways that parents can restore the novelty of reading and improve their child’s reading skills.
Naturally, the best place to begin would be at your local library. Just recently, many libraries have created a program where children are assigned a reading buddy, most of whom are volunteers. They usually meet twice a week for an hour and read along with your child. Many children who have participated in this program really seem to enjoy the one-on-one reading help from a book enthusiast. The quiet atmosphere in the library, offers the perfect reading envrionment without any distractions.
Another great program that local libraries offer is the summer reading contest. Children compete by reading as many books they can over the summer. As you would expect, the incentives of the contest will motivate them to read more than they usually would. Winners are usually awarded certificates and prizes, not to mention bragging rights as being the best reader.
For families who enjoy outdoor camping, this mini vacation is a great time to incorporate reading and make it fun. Everyone can bring along their favorite scary book and take turns reading aloud around the campfire. In the midst of roasting marshmallows, shining flashlights, and a cozy audience, your children will definitely enjoying this type of storytelling.
Joining a book club is another great way to establish a continual reading routine. Many after-school programs include book clubs. If for some reason there aren’t any book clubs offered elsewhere, you can have your child create their own book club and solicit help from other parents to supervise. Consider it an educational play date.
For older children, who are more computer savvy, listening to an audio book on the computer is a wonderful alternative to customary reading methods. The active voice of the narrator keeps them engaged and fascinated. Furthermore, reading along with a hard copy of the book while listening is a great way for your child to improve their verbal expression. It also helps to foster your child’s comprehension of the text.
Most of all, if your child has any special interests that they would like to learn more about, a trip to the bookstore is a sure way to spark their imagination. Attending book signings, meeting authors, and asking them questions will help your child develop a deeper appreciation for books and learn the value of literacy.
For parents who utilize the “time-out” technique as a disciplinary action, giving your child a book to read during this time will definitely keep them busy.