We all know that reading contributes to the academic success of our children, develops their imagination and helps them have a better life. Orhan Pamuk (2006 Nobel Prize in Literature) says: “I read a book one day and my whole life was changed.”
We love to cook together with our children, to plant flowers and vegetables, but when it comes to reading, the story is different. Reading is a solitary activity, when you read you find yourself alone, just you and your book, which takes you to another world.
What can we do to help our children read more?
1. Let your children choose the books they want to read
Parents should let children choose by themselves the books they find interesting to read. This way they will be stimulated to love reading. When children read with passion, they develop their habit of reading. Later on, they will find it easy to study classic literature at school, unlike other children which did not read any literature at all.
Even if it is not a masterpiece, a book enhances children’s vocabulary with new words and develops their imagination.
If you ask your kids to read literature from the beginning of the century, full of archaic words, they will believe that reading is not something “cool” but rather annoying. We want to associate reading to something pleasant, like a trip to a world with unlimited options.
2. Create a special place to use for reading
This place will help them read without being interrupted and you can create it in the children’s room or in any other place in your house. It should be comfortable, a place where your children feel good. Organise the reading place together, buy a reading lamp they like, choose a cozy blanket and add books and magazines.
Choose together a name for it, for example “The Reading Club” or any other name they wish.
3. Tonight the whole family is reading
Choose a certain hour during which the whole family is reading, when the TV is off. The best example for the kids is the one set by their parents. Gather around together on a cozy sofa or other comfortable place in the house, each of you reading your own book. Let your children read out loud the paragraphs they enjoy and comment together with them.
When children read to an adult, they feel they are important because they get attention and become self-confident.