The benefits of reading will last a lifetime.
Sep 17, 2020
Books are magical. The feeling of losing yourself in a good book is like none other. As beautifully put by actress Helen Hayes, “from your parents you learn love and laughter and how to put one foot before the other. But when books are opened, you discover you have wings.”
That’s why it is so important for children to have a positive feeling towards reading and this should be developed at a young age. In order to achieve this, a love of reading starts at home. According to Edutopia, each night before tucking your kids in bed, read aloud from a book that you have chosen together.
This will not only bring you and your children closer, but they may be inspired to discuss the characters, plot, or what they think will happen next. Through these conversations, they will be more engaged in the story and look forward to this nightly ritual.
When you are looking for the perfect book, why not take a trip to the library? Edutopia notes that this can become an exciting field trip for your children and open their eyes to the magic of books.
Since your kids are the ones who are ultimately picking the book, they will already be invested in what happens to the characters. They can also begin to understand that there are different types of books and you can see if they are more interested in fantasy, non-fiction, fiction, biographies, etc.
Additionally, a blog on Scholastic suggests that once you begin to read the book, consider acting out pinnacle or action-packed scenes (even consider using props). This will make your children feel like they are part of the story and begin to understand how the characters feel or why they responded in a certain way. This will make them much more empathetic.
You can also write a story together either based on the book you are reading or a plot straight from your child’s imagination. The blog said: “one of the best and most important ways to engage children in the sounds of language is through singing, rhyming, and word play.” This will inspire your children to use new words learned from the story.
As amazing as it is to read aloud to your children, you should also allow your children to read to you. Once you read a chapter or a few pages together, let your children retell you the story because this can foster a feeling of pride according to Scary Mommy.
You can even teach your children certain passages and quotes which will improve their memorization skills. One of the best ways to sharpen memory is to learn poems by heart according to National Public Radio. This will not only help children understand different literary devices but this will also come in handy when they must memorize facts for a test.
With a love of reading developed at a young age, children will turn into avid readers and begin to think beyond themselves. They can also create their own stories and let their imagination run wild. Books can also act as an escape and let children take a break from the stresses of everyday life. With a good book, children will truly be able to fly.
JACKIE SCHINDLER, CONTIRBUTOR
Jackie Schindler teaches EFL to students between the ages of 5-15. She is passionate about making English relevant, fun and memorable. She always tries to look on the bright side in every situation. She is an avid reader, writer, traveler and always on the hunt for the best iced coffee.