I'd love to write and say my children are bookworms who read spontaneously and can be found devouring books. However, this is not the case. While my boys do read, reading is not one of their burning passions.
Having said that, it always thrills me to see one of my boys snuggle up to read a book as I know how good reading is for them.
So what can we do to encourage our children to read spontaneously on their own?
One of the ways I've found to encourage children to read spontaneously is to provide them:
- books which focus on their current and immerging interests
- a wide range of books - fiction and non-fiction.
Firstly, provide books focusing on children's interests
When we make books available which expand on children's current and immerging interests, children are more willing to read spontaneously to find out more about their favourite subject.
If you think about it, the books you pick up the quickest are probably the ones written about topics that are dear to your heart.
In my experience, children will read when they have books they want to read. Often, these are the books that focus on children's interests.
For example, at the moment, one of my young men is interested in cooking. So guess what's in our book corner! The added bonus is now I get breakfast cooked for me! My sincere thanks to those wonderful writers of children's cook books!
Secondly, provide books on a variety of topics
By providing a wide range of books, there's a good chance that children will come across a book which will spark their interest, capture their attention and cry "Read me!!!" Such books will encourage children to read spontaneously.
This is one of the reasons why our library trolley often includes non-fiction books on a range of topics. Who knows what might capture our children's attention at different times in their lives?
Have a look at the books in your library box. Are there books about your child's favourite topic/interests? Are there books introducing new concepts or different subjects?
What do you do to encourage your child to read spontaneously? I'd love to hear about your experiences. Please feel free to leave a comment on this post or on our facebook page.
Have fun when you next go to the library. Remember to browse through a shelf of books about different topics you've not yet explored with your children!
Return to the Articles List for other children's learning activities or children's book reviews.