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Reluctant Readers: 5 Ways To Get Them Reading


Are your kids feeling the need to read? While summer can seem like the perfect opportunity to dive headfirst into a hefty to-be-read pile, for some kids that's really just work they don't want to be doing during vacation. A summer reading list can seem like the ultimate chore when you're a reluctant reader.

Some kids are perfectly capable of reading their way through a book; they just aren't interested. These children are often known as reluctant readers. They read on grade level and test fine when it comes to comprehension. They might even enjoy it, just a little, when their teacher makes reading silently for 20 minutes a daily part of the classroom.

But they'd never even think of picking up a book on their own. They have no interest. Books are boring. Books are hard. Books are stupid. Reluctant readers can often be more frustrating than kids who are developmentally challenged and who are motivated to work through their struggles to come out victorious. For reluctant readers, victory far too often looks like another summer day avoiding books.

Instead of getting discouraged by your child's lack of time spent curled in a hammock reading, here are five ways to spark their interest and get them lost in the pages of book.

1. Play word-based board games. Scrabble and Boggle will give the vocabulary part of your kid's brain some exercise, and show them that words can be pretty fun. A healthy dose of competition can sometimes be a good booster, too.

2. Introduce graphic novels, encyclopedias, and chapbooks. Your kid probably won't love the same books you loved as a child, and that's okay. Graphic novels offer tempting illustrations that help carry the narrative (and foster an appreciation of art) while encyclopedias and other types of guides let kids dip in and out of the book as they please and learn fascinating facts about stuff that interests them. And chapbooks are small and quick!

3. Download a bunch of audio books on their iPod. Listening to books is just as good as reading them, and if a child falls in love with a story through their ears, it's a win.

4. Introduce them to book trailers. These are like movie previews, but for books. They are attractive and fun for kids and might hook them enough to pick up the actual book. Here are a couple of places to start your book trailer browsing.

Book Trailers For Readers

Slime Kids

5. Read to them. I know, I know, you've been reading to your kids since they were in the womb! Isn't it enough already? The thing is, your high schooler still likes being read to, even if they won't admit it. Reading out loud is healthy for your kids long past the point when they can read to themselves, and it's healthy for you, too! Quality family time can be hard to find as our daily lives get busier. Make time for just one more page.



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