We finally have some reading success in our home. As a prior Elementary School teacher, I struggled with the fact that getting my child to love reading was a fight. It pained me that she never finished a chapter book. However, I also knew it was a delicate balance, in my opinion between pushing and guiding her to a love of reading. And, so, I waited and I continued to look for my “in”.
Little did I know it would come in the form of one book I have never been able to get my head into:
Notice which book is missing? She’s already half-way through book #2. This is epic for her. Outside of reading group in school, I have not seen her finish a chapter book in her 9 years of life.
Thankfully, her Dad knows each and every book of the series. This, however has not stopped her from pressuring me into reading it with her. It’s kind of like the 5K she is guilting me into running.
But, I digress.
So, what’s the secret to fostering a love of reading in your kids? Patience.
And a few other things, in my humble, professional opinion.
5 Tips for Fostering a Love of Reading in Your Elementary School Kids:
As I mentioned above, I truly didn’t think my child would ever get the ‘love of reading bug’. But, she finally found a series that kept her attention and that’s honestly what it is about. They must be engaged. We can’t force that magic and so it requires patience in finding those authors that make it happen for them. Which brings me to my next point.
You must consistently expose them to new authors, genres (types of literature) and story-lines. If something isn’t working for them, they need to be allowed to move on. I know that’s what I do! Granted, they should give it a few chapters, but why make them suffer through something that isn’t keeping their attention?
3.) Delve Deeper
Comprehension in reading comes when kids delve deeper into their reading. They need to make connections in their real life to what they are reading in their books. They should be connecting to books they’ve read before and what is going on in the world. They should be using the stories they have read to foster their imaginations in play. Help them do that. By expanding on their reading in life in these ways, you are creating meaning that goes beyond the surface of a story and it is lasting and meaningful.
4.) Pay Attention!
My child, it turns out is capable of WAY more than I realized. My rusty-teacher skills left me without the realization that my child was capable of reading more than those little fairy books she kept picking up off the library shelves. It wasn’t until I received her Standardized test scores that I saw that she was comprehending at a higher level. That was when I handed her a Harry Potter Book. She was obsessed with the movies and I knew that it might be her ticket to true engaged reading and she was, according to her scores, more than ready. And lo-and-behold! We’ve got a winner folks!
5.) Involve Siblings
I have three girls. My younger girls, the twins are 4.5 and they love books. They love to be read to by their older sister. Jordan enjoys reading to them most of the time. It was more fun for her when they were little cuddly things, but the benefit to all of them is a big deal. The littles get to hear a seasoned reader, someone they look up to, read to them while their older sister gets to play the role of mentor. It’s a win-win for all of them.
A well-read person is a person who can walk out into the world with confidence and this is ultimately why I continue to encourage my child thoughtfully, but continually.
Scholastic and EVEREADY® are teaming up to help parents shine a light on reading, even in the dark! EVEREADY®’s high quality batteries and flashlights are reliable and affordable and can be purchased at Dollar General or Target.
Check out Scholastic’s really fun Pajama Jam Reading in the Dark party kit and throw a reading party at home with your kids and/or with some of their friends! It’s also the perfect way to get siblings of varying ages reading together in a really fun way. Add in some smores and you’re golden!
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of EVEREADY®. The opinions and text are all mine.