10 Strategies to Encourage your Reluctant Reader this Summer

Have your child read 30 minutes a night. For some families this is a no brainer, their child reads so much they have to ask them to stop. For others it requires some scheduling and encouragement and it gets done. For at least 20% of parents whose child has difficulty reading, they might still be recovering from the last time they tried to enforce this. For those 20%, here are some ways to encourage reading without resorting to force:

  1. Let your child see you reading. A book. Made of paper.
  2. Use the Premack principle. For every minute your child reads, they get a desired activity of their choice. This could be something they already do such as use a tablet, watch a TV show, or play a game with you.
  3. Turn on the subtitles!
  4. Print out your child’s favorite song lyrics and make a book. Research shows repeated readings builds fluency.
  5. Create a print rich environment. Use blue painter’s tape to label the house. Chair. Bureau. Refrigerator. If they are having fun add adjectives. Transparent window. Cozy bed.
  6. Play games that require reading. Codenames. Scrabble. Bananagrams.
  7. Write them a long letter and mail it to the house. Ask your friends and family to do the same. Encourage your child to write back.
  8. Use alternatives to chapter books: magazines, comic books, poetry, scripts, game manuals etc.
  9. Ensure your child is able to find books at their level without judgement. Have them read a page to you and follow this guide:

0–1 words they don’t know=too easy

2–3 words they don’t know=just right

4–5 words they don’t know=challenging

5 or more words they don’t know=read it aloud to them

10. Allow them to write freely. Let go of the worry about spelling. Encourage them to write posters, letters, games, comics, recipes, menus etc.

Ed Psych/Educator/Entrepreneur/Mom to a rad daughter. #TraumaInformed founder fighting for a more compassionate, equitable, and innovative world. cogdiv.com

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