Reading is FUN!

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Well I think so, and that’s the message I am trying to pass on to my children, but how do you do that successfully in a world full of gadgets, gizmos and reality TV?

Books have always been a big part of my life. I didn’t have piles of toys as a child as my parents weren’t particularly well off but I did have books. Again, not many, but books I loved to read over and over again. Favourites included anything by Enid Blyton, the What Katy Did series and one I really adored, Charlotte Sometimes.  I also loved reading poetry and joke books and remember spending hours in bed at the weekend reading these before everyone else had woke up. I still read for pleasure now.

We’ve always surrounded our children with books, with bedtime story routines beginning when they were only about 4 months old (It it bedtime Wibbly Pig?). They’ve always had books for birthday and Christmas presents and their bedrooms are full of books of all types. As toddlers, their little heads were always in books and they were fascinated turning the pages over looking at all the brightly coloured pictures and then there was nothing nicer than getting cosy together with a book together at the end of the day.  I still, even now they are 9 & 7 spend time reading out loud to them which they really love.

I’m fortunate enough that my children have both turned into great readers. My daughter took to it like a duck in water and is flying way ahead of where she needs to be. My son was a real slow reluctant starter but has now almost caught my daughter up. She favours poetry, he prefers non-fiction. They have reading targets at school which is checked weekly, and they have to read at least four times a week to get their house points, which they always achieve with a bit of reminding from me but what I am struggling with now is how do I make them WANT to read?

Whilst in the mornings in bed, more often than not they’ll be found with their nose in a book, at any other time of the day they would never choose to read a book. I’m constantly met with “I’m bored” at the weekend and I’ll tell them to go read a book but they won’t because what they really want is for me to say “put the TV on” or “play Minecraft”. Neither of these is bad but I really hope they get to the point where they want to go read a book because they enjoy it and want to escape into that make-believe world because reading can be SO rewarding.

I am conscious of not pushing them to read too hard and maybe they’re still too young to want to read for pleasure when so much of it seems so tightly tied up with school and learning but I do so dearly hope they discover one day that feeling of excitement when reading a story for the first time, of not wanting to go to sleep because you want to finish a book and the mix of emotions when you finally get to the end of a book. Reading is a rollercoaster!

Before I go I will share this poster that I once saw, The Rights of the Reader, I love it and it makes me feel better when I hate a book so much I don’t want to continue!

Ten rights of readers poster

Maybe you’ve got some hints or tips for me?

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18 Comments on “Reading is FUN!”

  1. My two girls have got the bug from me of reading, however I do find that with the distractions of technology, they too get sidetracked by things like minecraft, it is hard to get them off sometimes!

  2. My eldest is a book worm and would rather snuggle with a book than, well, anything else. He’s 17 and studying A levels. Number 2 is a practical reader. He reads fan-fiction on the internet but will mostly read a book to find out how to do anything.
    The daughter was my problem child. Despite living in a house that at times resembles a library with parents who read and who read to her, it was very low on her list of must do’s. Turns out she has a mild form of dyslexia, enough to make reading hard. The Kindle, with really large print and I mean REALLY large-word -to-a-page print helped. She read a couple of books herself on that and found out that she actually enjoyed the freedom of not needing us to read to her. Audible is another salvation; at least if she’s not actually *reading* she is getting the narrative into her head, and sometimes (not always) that pushes her into reading a book because, as she puts it, you can always find your favourite parts in a book!
    BTW, love the poster!

  3. That poster’s great! I think the main thing to remember with children is that it doesn’t matter what they read as long as they read something. I’m an avid reader of fiction, as is my daughter. My son reads football reports and magazines, The Simpsons comics and non-fiction books such as The Guinness Book of Records.

  4. I have been lucky that both of mine love their books and my son is an excellent reader. I have introduced mine to books from a very young age and thankfully they have both just taken to them.

  5. I read with both my children from the first few months of their lives. They just see it as the norm to read everyday now. My son is an amazing reader and always has his head in a book. Both my children have fantastic imaginations. Reading IS loads of fun 🙂

  6. I love that poster!! I love reading and I really want my children to love it as much as I do. Mine are still quite young but I think it is much harder to engage them in a digital age.

  7. I am a big reader and my kids know I am unlikely to say no to a request for a new book or library visit – my 18 year old always has her nose in a book now, my middle boy is going through a fact boo phase and my youngest has far too many picture books!

  8. I’m so with you on this. My Teen has always disliked reading. He’s gone through phases and when he wanted to read a book i was overjoyed but he’d get bored and never finish it. I always thought it would affect his writing skills but actually, he’s doing GCSE English this year and has achieved an A* in all of his assessments which is weird I think! Anyway my daughter (aged 9) has suddenly started loving books which I’m so happy about. x

  9. I love that poster, and as a librarian, I am all for giving readers rights in everything and anything! My son is a bit of a reluctant reader to be honest, but we are managing, with encouargement and a little bit of creative thinking. He refuses to read to me at night, so we are reading to his soft toys and I am listening! Sure we will get there in the end. Thanks for sharing.

  10. Mine have all read well as children but seem to loose interest as teens. We just to borrow the comic book stories from the library for my older boys to help

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