Raising a boy who takes pleasure out of reading books just as much as from a soccer ball or a Play Station might sound easier said than done, but, in the long run, it’s all worth it.
There are lots of books there that can stand on their own two feet and win the battle against a Nintendo, a Xbox or… even Minecraft!
Here are five easy steps to get your son to enjoy reading.
1. Visit the local library together.
Let your son wonder around the library, see a book and sit down to page through it. Don’t rush him. Find books with little text and lots of images geared at what your child is interested it. Then slowly move to books with short chapters.
If your child struggles to read himself, then read to him, aloud, every day. He’ll still get to enjoy the story without feeling frustrated and books will still be a positive experience for him. Until he’ll enjoy them by himself.
2. Leave reading material around the house
Be it a picture book on his favorite topic, a magazine or a comic book, you want him to pick it up and enjoy a page or two at a tiem. How-to books on sport are a great place to start getting a boy interested in reading.
Never make reading a chore. Rather surround your child with books, rather than forcing it on him. Place a bookshelf in his room and allow him to choose a few books to place in it.
3. Read yourself.
Children often mimic what they see and we, as parents, are our children’s mirrors.
Kids, especially boys, love silly books. Books with jokes are a great way to get them reading, sometimes even without them even noticing they are doing it.
4. Get Dad involved.
Get Dad to read too if your son struggles with reading. Even better, try a father-son book club and perhaps get involved with other dads and their sons. Book clubs are not only for girls – have a BBQ-Book Club, for example.
Remember, having positive role models help both boys and girl staying interested in reading.
5. Start a reading list by writing down what your son read and what he would like to read next. Allow him to rate the books. This way you can both see where his interests lay and he can feel more in control over his reading.
Studies show that children who have been introduced to books from an early age have a positive attitude towards reading and a greater chance to become successful readers. But a successful reader isn’t only someone who devours one book after another. A successful reader will also understand what the story line is about, will get its meaning and will also be able to focus on the task at hand for a longer time. For this is what reading entails, being able to focus indefinitely. Or at least until Mom or Dad come to switch off your light and forceful y remove the book from your hand because… tomorrow is school.
Five great books for boys:
1. Captain Underpants series is a great place to start and a Best Seller in Children’s Chapter Books;
2. Diary of a Wimpy Kid has over 10 000 reviews;
3. The Boy’s Book of Adventure: The Little Guidebook for Smart and Resourceful Boys a fun book packet with facts on outdoor and nature;
4.The Book With No Pictures if you’re brave to say out loud everything that’s written on each page;
5. Joyful Trouble a fun read about a real dog and World War I, Best Gifted Young Adult book in UK.