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Janet V. Johnson, MD
Encouraging a Love Of Reading
Loving Care Pediatrics

Encouraging a Love Of Reading

Encouraging a Love Of Reading

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends limiting a child’s use of TV, movies, video and computer games to no more than one or two hours a day. Consider encouraging your child to read.

Trying to raise a reader? Limit screen time, start young, share books aloud, visit the library and be a good role model. This is the best advice, but here are a few creative suggestions and quick fun tips for inspiring both new and veteran readers. Over the summer try to have your child or children read for fun at least four books to help increase their reading speed and comprehension.

Hook Them On the Story

Start it together read aloud to get them interested in the story. For long car trips start audio recordings of books.

Pique their curiosity by reading aloud something you think may be of interest to them, and then share a compelling tidbit that would send them reading with curiosity and delight.

Make It Social and Keep It Fun

Have children who are just learning to read start by reading aloud to a pet, stuffed animal or younger siblings who are not yet mobile.

Turn reading aloud into a game and have everyone including children guess what will happen next.

Offer Books As Treats

Make reading a reward and kids will pick up on the excitement. Set up reading areas with themes. Have a mystery book box or bag, where you hide new books and the child has to guess the theme, title or series before the can open the surprise.

Tooth fairy can bring books instead of money for each lost tooth.

Think Outside the Book

Have a rotating supply of quick reads in the car for your child to read, share funny stories and facts with you as they travel.

Mix up the media. Children of today are fortunate to have books on computers, e-readers, audio books and tablets as well as paper versions. Find out what best fits the child’s personality.

Read and Write

Encourage your child to write to their favorite author to let them know their feeling about a good book they have just finished.

Encourage your child to make up stories of their own to go with drawings they have made and to write their own tales.

Bring Books To Life

  • Pick a personality – Jump into the book by acting out the characters and imagining how they would behave with one another.
  • Make sound effects – As you read aloud have your child or children get involved by supplying the appropriate background noises, such as closing of doors, howling sounds or footsteps.
  • Change It Up – As you read aloud old favorites or classic stories change the storyline to see if your child can catch you; by switching words, or renaming characters to match friend and family members.
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