How to Recover the Habit of Reading in Children
Parents can introduce children’s literature into their children’s lives even when they’re still babies. In doing so, they help instill a habit of reading.
Numerous publishers have published books for children between 0 and 2 years of age with the aim of familiarizing them with shapes, colors, and all other aspects related to books.
In addition, during preschool and the first years of elementary school, educators continue to promote the habit of reading in children.
However, at a certain time and age, usually around 8 or 9 years old, there is a lack of interest on the part of children. To alleviate this decrease in interest, here are some tips to help recover the reading habit.
Tips to recover the habit of reading in children
As we’ve already mentioned on other occasions, each child is different. While it’s impossible to generalize, there’s a trend where, at a certain age, children begin to lose interest in books and literature.
What are the reasons for this loss of interest?
We speak of reasons in plural because there are several reasons why a child may put aside reading.
First of all, and perhaps the most common reason is that, although children’s literature has grown enormously with new books for kids up to five or six years old, not as much has occurred in literature for children between 8 and 10 years old. And this is an important age, as it’s a time when, on many occasions, they begin to reject children’s literature.
The non-existence of themes, as well as the scarcity, albeit increasingly, of topics having to do with daily life similar to their own, has led to a decline in their interest in literature.
Of course, children of this age are already established readers. Just the same, they also still like to enjoy illustrations in books and short chapters. These factors help them better understand what they’re reading and will attract their attention much more.
Another reason for their loss of interest is undoubtedly the fact that schools often require children to read a specific book. What’s more, children often have to fill out worksheets on the assigned reading.
It’s very important that both parents and educators realize that they shouldn’t force children to do certain things if they don’t want to. In this case, they shouldn’t require children to read a specific book, as it can easily lead to a distaste for reading.
Of course, reading in schools is essential. However, we must encourage greater autonomy when it comes to choosing their own reading materials. This will be essential when it comes to recovering the habit of reading.
How to recover the reading habit
The first and most essential piece of advice we should follow when trying to recover our children’s reading habit is to listen to our kids. This will help us understand what types of books can motivate them to read again. In the same way, listening to them will reveal the topics that are most likely to attract their attention.
One of the common aspects of children’s literature is that the vast majority of children really enjoy sagas or book collections. When you see that they like a certain character or story, find out if there are more similar books.
As we’ve said before, forcing kids to read a book won’t lead to anything other than rejecting the activity. In addition, it’s also a good idea to accompany them during their reading. Or, in any case, talk to them about the book, if they like the characters, or if the story holds their attention.
Last but not least, library professionals are always ready to help parents and teachers in choosing books for children. They’re true experts in the field. No one will be able to give you better advice on the content of the books. And no one can tell you which titles are most suitable depending on the age or tastes of your child.
There may be cases in which children don’t really enjoy reading, especially today when there are so many distractions. However, as a general rule, children like books. You just need to find what really catches their attention.