Set Realistic Goals
When helping your child get back into reading, it’s important to set realistic goals. If they feel pressured or overwhelmed it will put them off reading. Start with small goals, such as reading for 10-15 minutes a day, and gradually increase it over time. This will help you avoid them feeling overwhelmed and give them a sense of accomplishment. You can help them track their reading with a wall chart or notebook. Depending on their age you can give them stickers for each reading session or another incentive once they have achieved their reading goals.
Choose the Right Book
Choosing the right book can make all the difference when it comes to getting back into reading. Help your child pick a book that interests them and is not too difficult to read. If they are struggling to choose a book, look for recommendations online or search our bookshop.org bookshelves for ideas.
Create a Reading Routine
Creating a reading routine can help your child establish a habit of reading. Set aside a specific time each day for reading and stick to it. Whether it’s before bed or in the morning before school, having a routine will help your child make reading a priority to ensure they get back into a regular reading pattern.
Start with Short Poems or Magazines
If your child is finding it difficult to concentrate on a full-length book or is overwhelmed with the idea of finding the time to read a whole book, try suggesting short poems or magazines instead. Shorter texts can be less overwhelming which means they are more likely to help ease them back into a reading habit. Funny poetry books or magazines are often overlooked ways to help children build their reading stamina but they make it easy to fit reading into your daily life while not feeling like a chore. Don’t Put the Mustard in the Custard by Quentin Blake was one of my daughters favourite poetry books when she was younger. We’d read it before bed and would laugh and laugh at some of the hilarious poems in there.
Read with a Friend
Encouraging your child to read with a friend can be a great way to stay motivated and accountable. it also makes reading fun to have someone to talk to about what they’re reading. They can choose the same book to read and read a chapter a day then discuss it at the weekend. Making reading a social activity can make the reading experience more enjoyable and help them stay on track.
Sign up for a Book Box
Signing up for an age appropriate book box can be a great way to help your child get back into reading. Book box subscriptions provide regular books and goodies each month which help children stay motivated and excited about reading. Some of our favourites are Woke Babies and Imagine Me Stories.
Taking breaks is important when getting back into reading. If you find your child getting frustrated or overwhelmed, encourage them to take a break and do something else for a while. This will help them come back to the book with a fresh perspective. The aim is to make reading for pleasure a fun experience so at any sign of distress or boredom, let them stop and take a break.
Don’t Force It
Finally, it’s important not to force your child to read if they’re not in the right mindset. If they’re feeling tired or distracted, they won’t get the benefit of reading anyway. Remember, reading should be enjoyable, not a chore.
Getting back into reading after a break can be a challenge, but it’s worth it. By following these tips, you can make the process easier and more enjoyable for your child. Remember to set realistic goals, choose the right book, create a reading routine, start with short poems or magazines articles, read with a friend, join a book box, take breaks, and don’t force it. Happy reading!