March is finally here, which means spring AND National Reading Month! Each year, my kids celebrate at school with all sorts of fun projects and events. So whether you’re also prepping to kick off reading month or just trying to get your child(ren) to dig reading, here are a few tips that make it more fun and get your kids reading.
Let Them Pick Their Book!
This is probably the biggest and most important part of all of this! Are you going to read a book you don’t like? Maybe. Are you going to get excited about it? No. Letting them pick their books is crucial in getting them excited about reading. I’ll be honest, this was a little bit of a struggle for me in the beginning, I thought I knew better, but it’s not about what I want. Or what you want.
We try to make it like a movie night at least once a week. We get our drinks and snacks, get comfy in the living room and read. I also ask them to tell me about their books, this allows them to do a little showing off and you can know their comprehending what their reading. (Sneaky huh?) It can also inspire ideas between the children and let them share their favorites/discover something new!
Make It a Date
Whether you go to the library or the bookstore, make it a date. I take each kid individually because, to be honest, I really don’t like shopping with all of them. Usually we do lunch, hit the bookstore and grab coffee (hot cocoa, juice, etc.) for the drive home. This lets them decide what they want to read AND get a mom date at the same time!
Have a Challenge
We’re a pretty competitive family – so each year we set a reading challenge. My oldest got an award in first grade for most words read in the entire school. It pushed him to try again in the following years. This year is 25 books! School books are not included in this count.
Keep Them Organized on Shelves
I think this pretty much goes with anything. If you can see it, you’ll actually use it. If it’s hidden, you’ll forget it. We currently have one main bookshelf – however when we move in a few months, we already have designs picked for their own personal bookshelves. (No more of Izzy’s frozen books by Chase’s dinosaur books! Kids are weird.)
Watch The Movie
If the book also happens to be a movie, watch it. We all know the book is better than the movie, but it’s always fun to see the difference. Plus, it’s how I got my oldest to read Holes.
Kids learn from their parents. 18 years of monkey see, monkey do. When they see you reading, they’re more inspired to read as well. Break out that old favorite or pick up a hot new read for yourself!
We also trade reading time for screen time. I didn’t want to do “rewards” because I want them to genuinely enjoy reading. However, it was their idea, so fine.
Also – when they get a little bit older (so if you have older children), I think a family book club would be pretty cool!
How do you get your kids reading?
And what are some of your, their or the families favorite books!?
We’re always looking for new reads and suggestions!