Getting a reluctant reader to enjoy reading can be a very tough goal to accomplish. Once kids get it in their heads that they do not like something they often simply will not give it a chance. This applies especially to reluctant readers.
A passion for reading is not something you can press upon a child. It must be built progressively and continually practiced. Camouflaging reading can be very helpful as it is not as intimidating as an outright book. How you introduce reading to a child is also very important. You should tweak the reading material, and the ways you read, to match the preferences of your child. That way they are more likely to start doing it on their own.
Read aloud. Most people remember being read to aloud by their parents when they were very young. This is a practice you should continue throughout their elementary school years. It will boost their vocabulary, improve their listening skills, and ignite their imagination.
Go by their interests. Get them books and magazines that are geared towards their interests and passions. If your son loves dinosaurs get him a book on dinosaurs. If your daughter loves Science subscribe to a Science magazine for kids. Visit your local library and let the kids explore the shelves. The more your child is interested in the subject matter of a publication the more likely they are to pick it up and start reading it.
Incorporate technology. Technology is constantly changing and evolving yet it seems the one demographic who can constantly adjust quickly to new technologies is young people. Take advantage of the fact that kids like playing around with technology! Let them experiment with reading on iPads, e-readers, cell phones, and computers. Technology also has a way of making things seem cooler so your child may be keener on reading in a technological form.
Show them by doing it. Be a good role model and read! If the kids see you reading it will become a positive reinforcement for them. They will see you enjoying yourself while reading, chatting passionately about the latest thing you’ve read, and add a higher value to reading.
Reading doesn’t have to mean books. For reluctant readers just the thought of reading an entire book can be daunting. Instead parents should incorporate reading into materials unrelated to books and magazines. For example, next time the family hosts a board game night make them read the directions.
How do you go about encouraging your reluctant reader? Let us know in the comments below.
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