Source: Pezibear / Pixabay
Once a year friends from out of town visit for several days. I need to make sure I have a stack of books handy for Allie, their now 17-year-old daughter. She goes through them, one after the other. The cell phone next to him doesn’t seem to be slowing down his reading. Reading has been her default preference since she started reading on her own.
I asked her mother how she made Allie such a voracious reader. Her mother says she has no idea. But, when in a hurry, I learned:
- My friend read to Allie’s older brother when she was breastfeeding Allie.
- She read to her children every night before bed and nodded “one more book, Mom, please” almost every time she was asked.
- From an early age, she empowered children to choose which books to read at bedtime, borrow from the library, or buy from the bookstore.
- Allie read to her stuffed animals before she could actually read.
- Allie reads to the dog and the cat.
Parents like Allie’s mom like to say, “My child is a born reader. Whatever the reason, it’s great to see a teenager with a book, not texting or playing games endlessly on a digital device. Having children who love to read is probably not genetic or magic… and some children need more encouragement than others. However, it’s easier to make your child a reader of any age than you might think, and it has results you probably never envisioned.
Benefits Beyond Building Brain Circuits
It is well documented that children who read regularly do better academically, that reading stimulates critical thinking and imagination, and improves language skills. Other recent discoveries will encourage you to want to develop in your children a love of reading for life:
Manuel Jimenez, assistant professor of pediatrics and family medicine and community health at Rutgers University, followed the reading patterns of more than 2,000 urban mothers (many of whom were single mothers), when their children were 1, 3 and 5 years old and found that shared reading (reading to their child) during the early stages of development resulted not only in less harsh parenting, but also shared reading was consistently associated with a reduction in hyperactive and disruptive behaviors in children. children – often a trigger for tough parenting. The study, “Early shared reading is associated with softer parenting practices,” reported in the Journal of Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics, supports the recommendations of the American Academy of Pediatrics.
The American Academy of Pediatrics advises pediatricians to remind parents “that reading aloud with their young children can enrich parent-child interactions and relationships, which in turn improves their children’s socio-emotional development while creating positive outcomes. brain circuits to prepare children to learn language and early literacy skills. “
A study published in the Reading Research Journal emphasizes the role of a parent and involved 70 groups of six and seven year old children and their parents. The children were given reading material just above their tested reading levels. The researchers, Aviva Segal and Sandra Martin-Chang, found that parents who read and who have what the study authors call “superior reading skills (including the ability to spot difficulties a child has ) ”, Are likely to have children with higher reading scores. Most interestingly, parents with “higher reading skills” were less likely to criticize their children’s reading errors and offered more compliments to their children than parents with lower reading skills. They also paid more attention when their children read aloud to them. A lesson for parents who tend to get distracted or engaged in something else when their child tries to get them to listen. Listening is a powerful tool for connecting with children whether it is around reading or their development in general.
How to turn your child into a reader
You can limit the time spent in front of a screen, impose all the variations of digital detox, but beyond the obvious benefits of reading, the urge to read must ultimately come from within your child. Parents provide the building blocks, all of which are explained in How to Raise a Reader. Pamela Paul, New York Times book editor, and Maria Russo, New York Times cpublisher of children’s books have done the homework of a parent.
Allie’s mother didn’t have all the answers to making a child a reader, but How to elevate a reader done, offering expert advice, including hundreds of book recommendations, starting with books for babies and toddlers, even teenagers, as well as adult fiction and non-fiction for teenagers. A parent can dive regardless of the current age of their child: an infant, a beginner reader, an intermediate reader, or a teenager.
Read with toddlers
Source: StockSnap / Pixabay
Your toddler, for example, might hang on to one of their favorites and it might be a favorite book you like that would easily disappear. When my son was a toddler, it was a version of Cars and Trucks and Things That Go by Richard Scarry. Tiring for his parents, but intensely satisfying for our son. In this case, Paul and Russo suggest introducing books on the same or related subjects.
In a section called “Pro Tips for Reading Aloud” to your little one, the authors provide helpful tips as they do in each age-related section of the book:
- We read a book aloud with a child, rather than at a child.
- To learn to understand how books are created, start with the title, author, and illustrator’s name. Even ask, “What do you think this one is going to talk about?” “
- You can substitute a word that you think is beyond your child’s comprehension… or shorten a paragraph.
- Interruptions tell you that your child is listening. If she asks questions or comments, stop reading to hear what she has to say.
- Let him take care of turning the pages and the pace.
- Read more slowly than you think naturally or sing certain passages.
- Be aware that your child may not always hear the exact same story as you. Ask her what she sees in the illustrations.
- Show the objects on the page and ask what they are or what is happening.
As the authors note, “school is where children learn to duty read. Home is where they can learn to to like ce. “Even if, as a parent, you offer your child the love of reading, How to elevate a reader is also a gift for you.
Related: Why Jane Reads Better Than Jack – How Gender Stereotypes Affect Students’ Reading.
Copyright @ 2019 by Susan Newman