As parents, we all know that reading habit is one the best habits to inculcate in our children, right from a very young age. But then every child is different. There are some children who are not too fond of being read or reading on their own.
Some parents get extremely worried about their child not developing this good habit. One thing parents should understand that forcing anything won’t help. Sometimes parents compare their kids with the other kids who might love reading and start forcing their child to read. This might create an aversion towards reading.
Let’s check out few alternatives to forcing your kids to learn to read:
1. Make reading a fun activity for the kids. Instead of books, you can introduce flash cards, magnets, pictures initially to get the child interested in words.
2. Read only picture books first with less words. Let the child develop interest towards listening to stories first.
3. Introduce audio books. Audio books will be more fun for the kids. Once they start listening to words, will they develop more interest towards reading those words.
4. Read interactive books. Interactive books help the kids to relate with the characters as these books are made with animated gestures, sounds, special effects, flaps. The interesting presentation develops an interest in reading in a playful manner.
5. Read stories aloud in a funny and interesting manner. Read with lots of expressions and pauses, so that the child enjoys and understands the stories.
Next comes how to get your child interested in reading. It will take some time and patience if the child initially doesn’t show any interest. Here are a few ways by which you can get your child interested in reading:
1. Everyday make it a ritual during night-time to read out a story to your child. Initially, the child might only listen to 2 lines and then get bored. Be patient, be consistent. Gradually, the child will start taking interest.
2. Read out simple picture books. An interesting book with lots of pictures and simple words will be loved by the kids.
3. Read your own books in front of the kids. Children emulate their parents a lot. So, if they see you in the habit of reading, they will start showing interest.
4. Don’t get angry or show your frustration if they don’t show interest. You have to accept that every child is different, and that anger might lead to resentment.
How to motivate your child to read?
1. Motivate your child to read but with lots of love and patience. Don’t lecture, don’t scold, or don’t stop the ritual of bedtime stories.
2. Make time for reading. This should be a routine like any other routine that the child follows.
3. Read books according to your child’s age and liking. Don’t bring books of the genre that your kid doesn’t like or books with too many words or difficult words.
4. Take your child to libraries and book stores. This will help introduce the child to a wide variety of books. Read books together.
Another struggle of parents is helping their kids develop interest in writing. Here are a few tips to make it a tad easy:
1. Encourage scribbling in younger kids. When the child starts scribbling he’s trying to write!
2. Again, don’t force the child to write. Like every other thing that you teach, you have to have patience here as well. Take it easy.
3. Don’t compare with other children. Every child has his/her own pace of learning, eventually they all learn writing.
4. Practice is the key. Everyday make the kid practice at least one page of writing. Make it a daily habit.
5. Buy colorful pencils, crayons and books. Children love bright and fancy stuff. Writing with a colorful bright pencil works.
6. Create a writing corner. Let the child write peacefully in that corner.
Every kid eventually learns the habit of reading and also learns writing. As parents, be supportive and encouraging topped with loads of love and patience.
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