Looking for ways to encourage reading in your young ones? Here are some suggestions:
Let them catch you reading: Act as a reading role model for your kids by reading in your spare time. Remember that children learn by example.
Book time: Set aside at least one hour every night where the television is off and the whole family takes time to read or do a crossword puzzle.
Game on: Set up a family board game night where a different game is played each week. Have each member of the family involved in reading instructions and game cards and keeping score.
Hi ho, hi ho: Engage in sing-along sessions with your children.
Sous chef: Following recipes is a great way to improve both reading and math skills. Ask your children to read the instructions aloud and to help measure the ingredients when making a treat for the family.
Expand your vocabulary: Look up the meaning of funny words, like “onomatopoeia” and “Chinook” and test your family’s word power.
Map out your trip: Have your kids create the map for your next road trip then they can navigate by reading signs and billboards. Create a trip journal.
Reading buddies: Encourage your child to practice reading to the family dog, cat or goldfish. Pets are great listeners and don’t make a judgment if a mistake is made.
Surf: Check out the Internet together to find great sites that support your hobbies.
In their own words: Have your children write daily entries in a journal.
Create a family book club: Read a book and discuss it together. Post your family’s top 10 books list and book reviews online.
Write your own adventure: Write a short story as a family with alternative endings written by each family member.
Watch a book: Many children’s stories have been adapted for the big screen. Read these stories with your kids first, then watch the movie equivalent.
Read a classic adventure together: If your children like Survivor, they will love Treasure Island.
Climb the beanstalk: Cut out a beanstalk shape from pieces of construction paper and post it on a wall in your child’s room. For every book your child reads, a leaf, with the title of the book and author’s name, can be added.
Research and write your family’s history: Use the Internet, family letters and documents as resources, and interview your relatives.
Get the news: Read news articles and magazines and then discuss current affairs together.
Travel the world: Take your children to the library and use your library card as a passport. Check out books on different countries to learn about their geography and traditions.
For more family literacy tips visit www.FamilyLiteracyDay.ca.