This guest post was written by Yin Mones- a graphic artist, writer, and mother.

In these busy days of internet, smartphones, video games and instant gratification, parents are forgetting the importance of reading. It’s a huge problem.

For children, reading is one of the most important ways to develop both mentally and socially, providing a stimulating way to get to know the world around them.

This article will help you motivate your child to read more — encouraging a lifetime of reading and learning. Getting children reading should be more than fundamental. It should also be fun.

Developing a lifelong reader

As a parent, you know how curious your child can be. Questions like “why” and “how come” begin to fly fast and furious out of their mouths at a very early age. Reading can help answer their questions. In fact, when a child realizes how much they learn from reading, it becomes a “go to” option for them.

Getting children reading for the long term involves two things.

  1. A positive attitude towards reading
  2. The desire to continue reading and progress

Instilling these attitudes in your child can fill in the blanks that their natural curiosity creates.

2 Steps to get your child hooked on reading:

Step 1

Creating a positive attitude is the first step in getting children reading, and you should start helping your child develop this at a very early age.

You can start with simple storytelling when a child is 0-3 years old. Read to them. Tell them stories. Show your own enthusiasm from reading. Use facial expressions and different voices for different characters. Have fun with it. Children pick up and mimic their parent’s attitudes and examples, and this goes for reading as well.

You should make reading together a part of every single day even for just a few minutes. It should become a fun habit that your child looks forward to. (It’s also a great way to create a loving bond with your young child that will carry on throughout life.)

Step 2

Creating the desire to continue reading at higher levels is your next goal as a parent. By reading to them everyday when they are young, you have already taken a huge step.

Other steps to getting children reading for life is to make it accessible–filling your home with magazines and books. Surround your child with the chance to read. As your child grows, let them choose their own books. Introduce new genres, comics, and new devices for reading.

A child reading on tablets and smartphones is standard in today’s world—and expected. (Although a good hardback book is still hard to beat.) Start asking questions, and teaching about grammar too.

Help them make the connections they see in books with things that happen in real life. You’ll start to see the light bulbs going off in their minds. As they grow older comic books are a great option for continuing to make reading fun.

The love of reading for life is one of the most important gifts you can give your child.

These steps will get children reading for life

By making reading a fun habit, you are proving how wonderful books can be. It will become a fun and special part of their lives (and they won’t even realize how much they are learning and developing along the way.) Before you know it, reading will be as routine to your child as playing a video game or a game of cards.

Getting children reading for the long term fills in the blanks their curiosity creates, helping then learn and develop faster than ever.

More ways to get children reading — and loving it

You will soon discover many more ways to bring reading into your child’s life:

  • Gift-giving: Be sure to always give books as a gift.
  • Libraries: As they grow older, take trips together to the local library.
  • Bookstores: Although bookstores aren’t as widespread as in days past, they can still be found—and spending a few hours in a bookstore is great way to inspire the wonder of books in a child.

Reading is one of life’s greatest and most valuable treasures. It is one you will want your child to enjoy forever.

About the Author:

Yin Mones is a graphic artist, writer and a mother. She is a regular contributor at The Mini Ark – an online collective, publishing Bible storybooks and Christian learning materials. Check out her works at The Mini Ark blog: http://www.theminiark.com/blog

About Demetria Zinga

Demetria is a homeschooling mom and "mompreneur" who lives in Silicon Valley with her husband, two daughters, and a Shih-Tzu. She currently runs two podcasts for moms, blogs, writes music, and spends lots of time at coffee shops. Her goal is to be an encourager and motivator of women, helping them to find success and joy in homeschooling, business, and motherhood.

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