Thursday, January 5, 2012

Make Reading Enjoyable

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In  Reading Magic  by Mem Fox, she talks about the importance of making reading something that is enjoyable to the whole family. She implores parents to make reading out loud to our children something we love. Not a should. How many times do we think, "Oh great, it is story time." Fox says to make it like chocolate (or whatever it is you love) (pages 10-11).

Let's be real here. Sometimes we would rather just put our child in bed than spend 30 minutes reading stories to our child first. That means we are anxious through the reading rather than happy. It takes time and effort to read. I think a key here is to make sure we start our bedtime routine with plenty of time to read our books so we don't feel rushed or stressed about it. 

And how do we make it something we love as much as [insert guilty pleasure here]? One idea I have is to have books in your home you are interested in reading. Another idea is to really take a moment to think about how quickly this time will pass that your child will love to cuddle up with you to read a book. Another idea is to have a nice, comfortable spot for you to read together. Think about what you like about this reading time and really grasp that and treasure it.


How do you choose books? Fox points out that important elements to reading to your young child are rhyme, rhythm, and repetition (page 7). Choose books with these elements to make sure it is something the young child will be interested in. 

She suggests reading very expressively. Cuddle up with your child in the reading spot. Be engaging and praise your child for her participation (pages 8-9). Make reading fun for both of you and it can be a time you both treasure!

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2 comments:

dnvrmama said...

At 5 months my DS started trying to put the books in his mouth. I let him grab a page, then I would move the book so his movement toward the mouth actually turned the page. Now at 7 months his favorite part of reading books is turning the pages.

He laughs a lot when we take the book outside of the pages and move our legs to make him bounce if the character is running, or move the book if the character is throwing something. Basically, adding drama to the books through sound and movement as much as possible without leaving the chair. The more he laughs, the more motivated I am to take time while reading and not rush through the books.

Plowmanators said...

Sounds fun dnvrmama!

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