Hello, this is Brian with Childrensbookstore.com. Do you homework. Brush your teeth. Chew with your mouth closed. All good habits, but are also habits that are associated with nagging and the evil eye (my wife, not me). On the other hand, if your child can grasp the love and joy of reading, it becomes the ultimate and most sneaky of habits…because it will automatically become a habit without even trying or needing to be reminded.
The habit of reading is not as important as the joy of reading. As a bonus, though, if you discover or nurture the joy of reading, the habit becomes much much easier.
So, how do you help your child discover the joy of reading? Well, start by finding high quality books. You cannot go wrong with award winning books. Newbery Medal and Caldecott award winners are a fantastic place to start. Help your child find a book with main characters you think that they will love, doing things that are exiting to them or give them joy. It’s important to let your child know that it is ok to drop a book and move to another if the book is deemed as boring to him or her. There is zero joy in reading a boring book. Boring+Book=No Habit. It’s a simple equation.
Don’t force your children to read. If your children treat it like a chore, it will feel like one. And we know how fun chores are, right?
On the flip side, if you can help your child approach reading like a treat, that’s what it will be. Make reading a voluntary thing, a hobby, a passion. A REWARD. Children always love a reward!
I’ll see you next week for habit #4.