All good habits should begin at an early age. Reading is no different. The fundamentals of encouraging healthy reading habits in kids at an early age are reading with them at home. By reading together often or reading to them, your child will learn the joys of reading and motivate them to read.
Reading habits for kids is a nourishing and fulfilling experience and enables kids to quickly grasp power at an early age by listening to someone read; small babies will start to enjoy the voice, change facial expressions, and even imitate the words.
In a recent study conducted, it was found that people who start reading at an early age have better interpersonal skills, vocabulary, and a better hold on written and spoken language. This activity is essential as it increases the attention span of kids.
The primary goal to develop a love for reading among kids is to have fun together. If kids are interactive, engaged, and enjoying themselves, they are consistently learning. Having positive interactions with books develop good feelings about reading, which further motivates kids to read more.
Reading is essential to develop early literacy skills among kids, spark your child’s imagination and stimulate curiosity. It advances the ability to interact effectively and build your child’s brain, ability to focus, concentration, social skills, and communication skills. We have listed down a few easy tips on how to build the reading habit in a child:
1. Make reading an everyday activity and practice: As a parent, you can start to raise an avid reader from the day newborn babies come home. Babies respond well to the rhythm of a voice reading or hymning aloud. If the task is a part of everyday activity, the child likely looks forward to it. Reading every day helps develop comprehension skills and expands their vocabulary.
2. Read with and in front of your child: It very important that your child sees you read what you love, whether it is books, magazines, or even graphic novels. Interactive books are the best way to read along with kids. Such books with bright pictures and characters keep children interested.
When children see you interested in reading, they are likely to adapt to your enthusiasm. Taking kids to bookshops and allowing them to explore and pick up books of their liking is another easy and fun way to develop kids into voracious readers.
3. Create a personalized reading space: By reading area, we don’t mean huge bookshelves and a dedicated room. It can be a couch or a chair in the room where your child sleeps. A comfortable spot with enough light and age-appropriate books is enough to ensure the child is connected to reading.
Well organized reading space helps children to read effectively. To further help your child understand the real significance of reading, start reading stories to them.
4. Make trips to the library with your child: When children see other individuals reading at the library, they might want to do the same thing. Regular trips to the library, where they host story reading sessions and summer reading contests, are an excellent way to develop good reading habits in children.
5. Let your child choose what to read: Letting children picked the book they want to read as a way of raising lifelong readers. When children choose their books, they are reading for pleasure which reflects their love for reading.
Kids are more likely to read something they choose themselves, whether it is a book, a novel, or a magazine. Guiding them through selecting the correct text for their age is critical. Listen to your child read and show interest in what they read.
6. Find reading moments within everyday chores: Reading with or children shouldn’t always be about sitting down with a book. It should be a part of multiple activities we do all day like reading roadsigns, movie names, recipes, menus, newspaper, etc. As we go through the day, keep an eye out for reading moments. Make reading a fun-filled and relaxing habit.
7. Re-read favourite books: Your child may love to re-read their favourite book every day even if you want them to try reading other books. But re-reading allows children to connect words they see and hear.
Let them have favourites, and be prepared to read those favourites until you think you might go a little insane if you have to do it again. Encouraging ownership of a favourite story or book is one of the best ways to foster a love for independent reading in their growing-up years.
8. Learn more about how kids read: As a parent, you are your child’s first teacher. Knowing about their reading skills and ways to improve them can help support the child’s reading habit. Introduce your child to different genres of stories to see their interest and their attention span to other kinds of stories.
Don’t force a reluctant reader, and don’t ever give up. Read to them so that they can realize what they are missing and, in turn, don’t miss out on reading. Audiobooks accompanying a book are helpful. Read stories with your child, and use that time to evaluate whether your child finds it difficult to recognize words and their meanings.
Reading is essential skill children need to learn to be successful. Good reading skills benefit children academically and further for lifelong success. Reading develops vocabulary, increases attention span, and promotes assertive analytical thinking. By learning to make reading fun, your child is more likely to create a love of reading, encourage better reading habits, and make learning more accessible.
Reading is an enriching and joyous experience. Inculcating and nurturing this habit at an early age will bring a noticeable change in the way children perceive the world and themselves. For many, it is inspiring and life-changing, and for some, it’s educational and a learning experience. In any case, it is a win-win situation for the child, no matter what the takeaway is.