Reading has so many benefits that could not be counted. When I was in grade 4 I read a quote on my school board which was written by our teacher. He used to write one quote daily to motivate the students. While entering the school we used to take a glimpse of it. I hardly remember other quotes but one quote which captivated my mind was:
“Today a reader, tomorrow a leader” – Margaret Fuller
This quote had such an impression on my mind that it made me a reader and consequently a writer too!
Parents need to inculcate the habit of reading in kids at an early age. It will remain with them for their lifetime. Reading habit will lead your kids towards success.
It is never too early to read to a baby. I used to read during my pregnancy too! Reading to your baby before bedtime does not only develop bond but also boosts their cognitive faculties and in no time it will become a habit.
Some benefits of reading.
- It enhances language development.
- It develops communication and social skills.
- Reading helps in strengthening the attention span and improves concentration.
- It gives wings to imagination.
- It also facilitates the quality time.
- Reading inculcates curiosity, self-expression and the ability to learn.
- It builds love for books.
- It expands knowledge.
- Reduces stress.
- Improves vocabulary.
- Stimulates the mind.
- It develops analytical skills.
- Reading ultimately leads to an improved writing skill.
- Books reading sharpens the brain and improves memory.
- It keeps you away from gizmo-freak world of lifeless interactions.
Skills acquired during the first six years of life lay the foundation for the rest of their lives. Parents need to work towards developing the habit of reading. Kids are made readers on the laps of their parents as they learn to walk by holding their parent’s hands. All kids take a different time span to learn and develop the reading habit.
How to develop the habit of reading?
Be a role model
All of us know very well that our kids follow us rather than our advice. Don’t force them to read instead set an example for them. The more you will read in front of them, the better it is. Read anything such as newspaper, novels, magazine, any story books, sign boards or even the packaging labels which we come across in our daily life. You need to show them how to hold a book, turn pages, read from top to bottom and from left to right. You can also discuss the various benefits of reading and share your personal experiences how it helped you.
Be a book buddy
There is no substitute for books in the life of children. Nothing can beat the warmth of snuggling next to your child as you read to them. It is a simple activity that will create a bond with your child. Start with reading to your child and then read with them. Gradually they will learn to read independently.
Get real books
Try to avoid reading e-books as it will increase their screen time. Language applications cannot replace the real-life learning. Read real books in front of them. If you are reading an e-book they might think you are playing a video game online. So beware!
Get age appropriate books
If you choose age appropriate books, it will create an interest and confidence in children. Depending on the age books come with different vocabulary and language skills. You can help them to be wise with their selection of books. Books should contain appropriate pictures which also complement the meaningful text. Illustrative books take kids to another world altogether. Take a look at these reading lists for some ideas on whats best for your child to read.
Go easy with the language
To make the reading more interesting you can start with some easy language books such as ones in your mother tongue. And if you are reading a second language make sure you translate it so the child can fully understand the meaning. Encourage them to read it again, even the same book the next day and ask them if they understood it well or if they need your help.
Visit book stores/libraries
Encourage your child to exchange books with their friends once they finish a book. It will give them exposure to various interests. Plan your visit to a library and show them how to issue books out. Visit a book store together and let them select books of their own choice. Responding to your child’s likes and preferences is of utmost importance.
Comfort and the stress-free environment is the key. To make the reading experience more joyful, let them read in a comfortable position and grasp all the benefits of reading. Ensure they read in a proper light and avoid distractions.
Create a reading zone
You can make your home a reading zone by labelling the things around your child. Cupboards can be labelled with the names, grocery item jars, study material drawers, etc. Even while travelling encourage kids to read the sign boards, hoardings, store fronts, car names and numbers, etc. For some more tips, take a look at this post on encouraging your kids to read with no books involved.
Place books within the reach of your kids and at the right location so that they can pick up any book if they feel like they want to read.
Teach proper pronunciation
Who doesn’t love how kid’s find new ways to pronounce words and even make up their own words in their own language. You should correct them instantly and you can note it down for your own memories. It is my tried and tested habit, as correct pronunciation is the foundation of good dreading. It will definitely help you in the long term.
Boost reading speed
You can gradually improve the reading speed of your children. Fast reading habit is followed by successful school learning. It not only helps in improving academics but also makes you a good and fast reader.
Happy Reading Everyone! And don’t forget to share your thoughts and reading tips in the comments below.