By Emily Johnsen
Parents and grandparents are the child’s first and foremost teachers. They play an important role in teaching children to read and—maybe just as importantly–to love reading. Now that summer is just around the corner, why not take advantage of the school break to encourage kids to pick up a book? Here are a few strategies to help you encourage your grandchildren to read this summer.
Lead by example.
Children who see adults reading are more likely to think of reading as a fun activity. Pick up a book on the way to the pool or the park. If you are out of the habit of curling up with a good book once in a while, you may find that you really enjoy rediscovering the simple pleasure of reading.
Establish read-aloud routines.
Even if it is only for 5-10 minutes a day, try to make it part of your routine to cozy up and enjoy reading together.
Take advantage of summertime interests.
Summer often involves a myriad of fun outdoor activities such as swimming, bike riding or playing in the park. Choose books about these interests and then talk about them. Ask what the children liked about each book and share what you liked. Ask open-ended questions to get them thinking and talking about books.
Check out your local library.
Summer is a great time to visit the library in your area. Most libraries have excellent summer reading programs for kids. Regular library visits also help keep your summer book selection fresh and fun. Remember that books aren’t the only place you’ll find good stories; there are many great magazines and other publications for children in most libraries.
Keep it fun!
Now that school is out, don’t make reading an assignment. Take advantage of your grandchildren’s natural and spontaneous interests and let them read when they show an interest in reading. In other words, don’t mandate a set amount of time or pages kids should read each day.
Use these summer months to learn how to teach your grandchildren early reading mastery. Yes, you can do it! You can give your grandchild a gift to last a lifetime! Check out Age of Montessori’s Royal Road to Reading early childhood reading program. The method is simple, fun and affordable, and it works!