How To Make Children Love Reading?
In our screen-based society, many parents fear that television or video games are taking precedence over books. If you're wondering how to get your child to like reading, follow our tips and tricks! We explain how to make children love reading.
Don't hesitate to start early
You don't have to wait until a child learns to read to give him or her a taste for books and good stories. Babies can be read to from an early age. A young child can also handle adapted books and become familiar with the object by looking at the pictures and trying to turn the pages.
To get children to love reading, therefore, before the age of 6 :
- offer them adapted books
- put books in their environment by creating a small library in their room
- establish rituals around reading by getting into the habit of reading a story in the evening or at any other time of the day, for example on public transport
- taking them to the local library, especially on days when librarians hold 'story times' for young children.
Trips to the public library are also an opportunity to let the child choose the books they want... without judging their choices and this, even if your child wants to read the same book over and over again!
To broaden his horizons, consider offering him different kinds of books: stories, tales but also non-fiction books... before letting him choose. It is very important to respect the child's choices so that reading does not become a constraint.
Encourage reading for pleasure in conjunction with school
As soon as a child enters elementary school, reading becomes ubiquitous in his learning. In order for him to not lose the taste for reading between the ages of 6 and 10, it is essential to continue to encourage pleasure reading.
In this sometimes complicated period, when students may encounter difficulties in acquiring the basics of reading and writing, the best way to make children love reading is to associate this activity with enjoyable moments.
For example, you can subscribe your child to a magazine so that every week or month he or she has the joy of receiving a newspaper with his or her name on it...
Also, even if the child is now able to read independently, you should continue to read with him. Taking turns reading aloud is a good way to share a common story and world, to enjoy the joys of reading together, and most importantly to set a good example. If your child sees that you like to read, he or she will tend to imitate you and will spend less time in front of the screens themselves.
If you're not sure which books to share with your child, don't hesitate to ask for advice from your local librarians or bookstores. They will be happy to suggest age-appropriate books for your child and share their favorites.
Don't hesitate to take your child with you to the bookstore and let them choose the book they want. Contrary to what parents sometimes think, all reading materials are beneficial to children, including comic books or magazines.
From middle school on, offer books
Many children drop out of reading after 6th grade because they no longer find enough free time to immerse themselves in a book.
But, even after age 11, adolescents still function by imitation. So the best way to get kids to love reading is for parents to drop the smartphone and read in front of them.
Another trick to encouraging teens to read is to share works with them. Regularly suggest this or that novel to your child, explaining why you think they might enjoy it...
You can especially rely on universal stories and on the young reader's identification with the characters. If you lack inspiration, don't hesitate to turn to great classics like:
- The Three Musketeers or The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas
- The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
- La Rivière à l'envers by Jean-Claude Mourlevat (from 10 years old)
- The Harry Potter saga (for middle school and up)
- Timothée de Fombelle's books such as Tobie Lolness or The Book of Pearls from 13-14 years old.