Getting our kids to develop an 'interest' and eventually 'a love' for books is really not a mammoth task. Human beings are creatures of habit and this is even more so true for kids because they are still at a very adaptable and pliable age. The biggest thing required on our part is CONSISTENCY! If we can get that one right...then 75% of the job is done.
The following are a number of practical tips on how to go about this:
1) Have books in the home and let them be visible. Building a library simply entails buying one or two books regularly (ie.every 1-2months). They don't always have to be brand new too- there are secondhand bookshops and websites where one can get good books at a lovely price!
2) Develop a habit of having your children see YOU read. It doesn't have to be hectic reading. Could be a magazine, your daily devotional, a newspaper, an ebook...any form of reading really. Our 15month old son often gets books from his sisters collection and likes to page through them. We don't even worry about him tearing the pages anymore because he just doesn't. He's growing up in a household where reading is common place and he also often sits in(for a few minutes at least) on the bedtime stories I share with his sister. So, without even being intentional about building his love for books, his interest is already growing through simple exposure
3)Regularly make time to read to/with your child. Let it be fun, engaging and even interactive! Kids love it when you actively involve them in the story time
4) Invest in books that 'liven up' the reading experience. There are plenty of amazing books nowadays-books with sounds, flap books, pop-up books, books with magnetic pieces or figurines that can be stuck on and off, books with 3D features...plenty of interesting stuff. These, however, would probably be more suitable for a younger age group(ie1-4 years) or an older child who is still new to the world of books...as they stimulate a lot of interest! But, as the kids get older and the 'love' has set in, there is really no longer a need for books with 'added features'
These are just a handful of tips that you may find useful if you are still new to this game of getting your child to love books. It's also good to know that it is really never too late to develop a love for books in your child. Consistency is undoubtedly a critical factor in this case, too but it CAN be achieved. We will discuss more on this matter later on this week!
So, Twinkldonians! What other ways can we engage in to stimulate and grow our kids' appetite for books? Does your child have a favourite book and why is it their favourite? Where are the books in your household kept? If you are in the habit of reading to your child, when is it most convenient for you to do so and how often do you do so?