As parents, you have superpowers when it comes to your children, because they pay a lot of attention to almost everything you do. They look to you for how to act, what to say, what to like, and everything in-between.
When it comes to reading this is especially true. And it’s an amazing opportunity to use your superpowers for the good of helping your children become super readers. Here’s how:
1. Read Anything!
Sounds simple, I know. But let’s face it. Reading is contagious. You don’t have to like reading long books to inspire your children to read too. You can show your enjoyment by reading your favorite magazine, recipes from a cookbook, or a flyer for a garage sale.
Just by demonstrating an enthusiasm for reading in lots of forms, you will help your children discover the same joy for themselves.
2. Change What You Read
Another way to model good reading habits for your kids is to refresh your own reading choices — like trying a new genre. Always read biographies? Try a mystery bestseller next. Love fiction? Give a graphic novel a go. And when was the last time you picked up a collection of poetry?
By showing our kids all the different ways you engage in reading — whether it’s novels, newspapers, or the back of a cereal box — we give them more opportunities to see themselves as readers.
3. Create a “Yes” Environment
When your child wants to read another book by the same author, a new comic in the same series, or a book he’s already read over and over and over again, say yes! Your child’s reading habits might seem quirky at times, but the most important thing is accepting them with unconditional support and encouragement.
4. Pay Attention
Be aware of your children’s reading achievements every step of the way, however small. This teaches them how much you understand it’s something to truly celebrate! Notice and affirm those moments your children chooses to read! Engage with them when your children talk about what they’re reading. And when they’re old enough to read independently, ask them to read-aloud to you.