Let’s Get That Reading Routine Set Up
Summer is over and so is the school holiday. Now it’s back to school. If you are looking for some tip in how to make back to school a success make sure to check out my post, HERE, from last week. This week I am back with a great breakdown on how to set up a reading routine at home to foster a continuity between school and home.
The following easy but insightful tips will guide you through the process and have your kids reading at home just the way you want them to.
Create A Positive Reading Environment
Of course, home is not a school where teachers do a lot in creating an ideal environment for the little ones to read in. So for your routine to succeed the home environment needs to be adjusted to suit this purpose perfectly. The environment that we are talking about includes both the physical and psychological environment at home.
For the physical environment, the first thing you need to do is to create a reading space in a quiet and convenient place in your home. You can even call this space”our super reading area”. Make this reading area comfortable by having a cozy chair or any other convenient furniture that can accommodate the two of you comfortably. It’s a great idea to have some bookshelves in the area where you can place the most interesting titles that will constantly draw your kid’s attention.
The psychological environment is all about preparing the child for what is to come next. Let the child know your intentions and make it sound and actually be a fun activity for both of you to read at home.
Have Plenty of Reading Material
With the issue of the home environment sorted out, it’s time to get the tools of the trade in place. Get age-appropriate reading materials for your kid. You can use this opportunity to accumulate such materials and develop your own home library for the child. There is no harm in having the child select some of the materials that interest her. Remember it’s her activity, not yours and if you have to build and reinforce that interest you have to listen to and appreciate her interests. Don’t forget to make some visits to the library. Help the child select great materials that she’ll be eager to read, and by the, way sneak in a title or two for yourself, we’ll tell you why shortly.
What about the use of technology? This depends on the age of your child. You are a 21st century mum with a 21st-century kid both of you are living in the era of technology. Preschoolers and kids below the age of eight are naturally drawn to technology. You can make the daily home reading routine even more interesting and fun to the kid by gradually introducing technology in the reading schedule. Download simple age-appropriate eBooks and games or have the child listen to audio books. You can even download a story maker app and assist your young one write and illustrate digital stories which can then be shared with others. When you use a balanced approach to education and technology at home you enrich the learning environment and make the child more receptive and eager to always get to the reading area.
Set A Reading Time
This is the heart of this whole process. Set an appropriate reading time when you and the child can be converging at the reading area for your daily reading sessions. Though after dinner appears to be the most appropriate time the schedule, however, differs from one family to the next because of differences in lifestyle and the specific needs of each child. Pick a particular time that is convenient for the entire family. It is important to help the child internalize and stick to the routine until it becomes second nature to the kid and you. Remember old habits actually are hard to die. Once the child internalizes this habit chances are he will retain it for life.
Be A Role Model
Children are very observant and they are fond of emulating the people they hold dear. If your child doesn’t see a passion of reading in you, chances of you igniting a passion for reading in the child will definitely be very remote. If your child is a preschooler who is yet to master reading skills read for him but as he progresses and starts internalizing these skills take turns to read together. When you read, do it with expression and enthusiasm because it helps in maintaining your child’s interest while introducing her to the natural phrasing of sentences as well as written language. If the young fellow is old enough and has mastered these skills you can spend time together reading separate materials – remember why we recommended you take a book or two from the library? The reason is simple you too should have something to read in the process.
Children are very observant.
Like or not your kid sees what value you attach to reading. Habits are contagious. You have to love reading and demonstrate that to the child more so during this time. At this time everything else takes a back seat and the reading become your objects of choice and attention. This will rub off in the kid’s mind. Reading at home shouldn’t just be an end by itself, make connections to the books in your day to day life. Why not relate a certain activity or emotion to a character you both read in a book? Make sure the connection carries a worthy and memorable lesson to the kid.
This is a valid question that requires an honest answer. When you want a child to internalize a routine then the best thing is to have it carried out daily. If the reading is erratic the whole idea of a routine collapses. This implies consistency in the daily flow of your child’s activities. So set it up in such a way that it becomes an integral part of her daily routine. Its that simple!
Mama, if your school-aged child has gone back to school this fall you now have such a great and easy way to complement what your child is learning at school. At the same time you’ll help the child to keep abreast with the progress made in class. So roll up your sleeves follow these simple tips and get that daily reading routine in place now.
What tips do you have to set up an effective reading routine at home??
Until Next Time,