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Is there a right way to inspire children to read?

Author GreatDad Writers
Submitted 28-12-2011

It seems that fewer and fewer children are reading these days. Between television, surfing the internet, movies, digital music players, video games and smart phones, there are a growing number of electronic distractions that hinder regular reading times and result in shorter attention spans. Because of these factors, many children are earning lower reading scores and struggle with schoolwork in general. According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), students who frequently read at home are stronger readers and even boast higher math scores.

As a dad, you want to ensure that your children have the best opportunities for a quality education and reading is one of the best ways to ensure this level of success. However, forcing children towards books against their will isn't likely to produce literate children – you need to find alternative ways to inspire them to read on their own. How exactly do you achieve this? Here are some tips to make reading a regular and enjoyable activity.

Start early
Before your children are old enough to even speak, start introducing them to books. Providing interactive books with colorful pictures, touchable textures, a mirror or sound effects is a great way to implant the idea that books are fun.

Read with your children
Teaching by example is an effective means in every field, and reading is no different. If your children see that you enjoy reading on your own and are interested in reading along with them, they'll carry that mentality themselves. Sit down for story time at least three of four times a week for the best results. You can also challenge children and increase their vocabulary by reading more complex stories over time.

Provide alternatives
Traditional books don't have to be the only source of reading for your children. Expose your children to different media like newspapers, magazines or even Internet articles for a varied reading experience. You can even use comic strips or comic books to help keep their interest. During long road trips, consider listening to audio books for mobile story time.