My Child Refuses to Read, How Do I Encourage Them?

Reading is one of the most useful skills that one can obtain. Reading opens up new worlds to the reader, allowing us to discover new and valuable information from articles, books, and magazines. It is also essential since it is a fundamental skill to be a functioning member of society.

Just from the few reasons stated above, it is very important to facilitate a good reading habit for your child. Children are more apt to learn new skills while they are young, rather than developing those skills later in life.

While some kids would be more inclined to read books in their free time, some, on the other hand, would much prefer to spend their time playing video games, watching cartoons, or playing outdoor sports. However then, will the latter group of children be able to practice their reading skills and comprehension?

Below are five ways that will make reading time with your child more manageable.

Read aloud to your child

Before when we weren’t able to read yet, our parents or guardians would read to us and explain what was happening in the story.

Reading aloud allows your child to familiarize themselves with the phonetics or how a letter or a word should sound when read. This may then allow your child to improve their speech and language development through constant reading exercises with them.

Let them choose what they want to read

Children always want to feel like they’re in control. In this case, give them that satisfaction by having them pick whatever book they feel like they want to read. (even if it’s just a picture book!)

Having them pick their own choice of books will give you an idea of what books they prefer and what piques their interest.

When shopping for new books for your child, try to bring them with you and ask them to pick what books they think they will like.

You could also try to work out a deal with your children that after having read three books of their choice with them, the next two books will be books of your choice.

Pose questions during reading time

Asking your child questions throughout the reading period will encourage your child to pay attention and interact with the book.

Simple questions such as, “so where did the kitten go to next?” or “why did Johnny lie to his papa?” will go a long way in improving their interest in the book right up to the very end.

Another benefit to this method is a better development of their reading comprehension skill. Children will be able to make sense of whatever they are reading without requiring supervision.

Create a unique reading experience

To some children, reading time is a very boring and tedious period that requires them to stay perfectly still for a few minutes until it’s over. Some kids are more hyperactive than others and therefore require a different tactic to keep them interested in the entire duration.

Acting out certain scenes in a story they are reading is one of the few ways to keep their interest up. You may also try to change your voice for different characters for the stories you are reading to give each of them a different personality. Similarly, using toys or props during reading time will also achieve the same effect.

Be a good (reading) example

Children are more likely to follow in their parents’ footsteps since they will take inspiration for whatever they see their parents do in their homes. With this idea in mind, try to show your children that you are actively reading books that you enjoy around the house.

When you are talking with your kids, try to casually insert some new information that you discovered from your readings, like how you discovered from an article that there will be more advanced human-like robots in the future. Or maybe even share your favorite scene in one of the recent books you have read.

Essentially, tell your children anything that may be of interest to them from things that you have read, while also emphasizing the value of knowledge that may be gained from reading.

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