Readers rejoice!! A month dedicated to reading is here. Let's throw all our other curriculum out of the window and just simply read. Well, before we go off the deep end, let's look at the value of reading in our kids' education.
Simply by reading, our kids' knowledge of far off places can be deepened. Vocabulary can grow by using context clues, no dictionaries are needed. Also their own writing will get an incredible boost as they see proper sentence structure, grammar, and spelling in the lines of the pages they are reading.
Sounds great, right? And for some of your children, it is. However if your kids are anything like mine, their reluctance and opposition could potentially suck all the joy out of reading.
So how do we combat this? Well if you are interested in reading a great book to inspire you on how to inspire your kids' love of reading I highly recommend this book.
How exactly do I get my kids to read?
This first step requires you to do some legwork. If your kid is a reluctant reader, they are not going to wake up tomorrow and beg you to go to the library to get a wagon load of books. So as their motivator, you will have to do a little leg work in the area of suggesting books. You know what your kids like. Whether it's basketball, video games, skateboarding, horses, or whatever, find books that are based on those subjects. Go find a lot of them. Not one or two, but as many as you can. Then once you have a ton of books, hand them to your kids. It might take 20 of your books suggestions for them to find 1 they like.
Step 2: Give them time during the school day to read. I know it sounds simple, right? But carve out time during your homeschool day to do nothing but read. Do this several times a day. And you should be reading your own book right along side them.
Make this as cozy as possible. Maybe your kids are reading in bean bag chairs, outside hammocks, or even swings. My kid likes to lie under our coffee table. The novelty of finding their own spot will be motivated to dig into their book. For your reluctant readers, giving them this space and time will give them a no pressure experience to get sucked into a book.
Step 3: Be consistent. Now that you have done your part by giving them book options, time, and space, you have to be consistent with it. No matter what your homeschool day looks like, I suggest giving your kids daily reading time at the same time every day. This is something that must happen every single day in your homeschool life if you want to build some steam. Just like a SpaceX rocket that needs to enter space the initial blast off takes a lot of energy but once it enter space it cruises right along with minimal effort. Same with our kids' reading. It will take lots of effort in the beginning to find the right books, but once your kids experience the joy in reading, the goal is for them to cruise along as readers for life.