Left to their own devices, kids may not make good choices. Should we make them read hoping that they will learn to like it without compulsion?
Kids should be made to read, just like they should be made to bathe or brush their teeth or to go to bed on time. If it is a way of life, children won't know anything else. And of course, they will like it because of all the wonderful choices of reading material. At first, their parents should give them some direction about what to read, and help them to choose reading material well. Through this alone, the world will also become a much better place because we'll be raising an educated generation (not just school educated, but educated by many different viewpoints) and the next generation will be able to think and ask questions - something that is so lacking in our world!
No. I think forcing kids to read is the worst possible thing to do. If you want to play mind games with kids, it is better to forbid them to read. Then at least they will be curious and want to find out about this grownup pleasure. But seriously, when a child finds a book he or she wants to read, reading will happen.
And maybe hide treats between the pages.
You don't need to force them. They're desperate to read as long as they see adults and their peers reading. Now adults, that's another story!
Like anything, if done with a joyful spirit, we as parents can teach our children that reading is not to be dreaded. We can lay the foundation for the love of reading or I really don't have time to read to you. The child whos parent takes time to create the wonderful world of storytelling, pictures, voice influction, and sharing will build a wonderful base that the child will take with them forever. However, those who do not take the time and put across to the child that reading time is another chore will leave that lasting impression on them forever.
I do believe that library time is important. The factor here would be to let the child make the choice of what books they want to check out. After checking out that first book then it would be great if they were to have to pick another genre. Once into the higher levels of education reading takes on a different pattern. If they have already established that all reading does not have to be "boring," they can escape to books of their choice that they are not repulsed by.
How about an organized/structured family reading time five days a week?
Yes, while they are young and not running off to the four corners!:)LOL
As a youth librarian and a mother, I would like to suggest that this is the wrong question. It brings to mind those lexile numbers that schools have been making kids test through. A child picks a book at the lexile number his teacher suggests is appropriate for his reading level, tries to remember every detail he can from the story as he reads it, and then takes a test to prove that he's ready for the next level. This does not teach children the love of books. I certainly had enough parents bring their reluctant readers into the library and tell them to pick a book. The kids did not look happy.
What I did with my son, clear up until he was in 7th grade, was read to him at bedtime. One time I checked out the book Friendly Persuasion to read to him. He didn't think he was going to like it, but as I got into the 1st chapter, I was laughing so hard I had tears rolling down my cheeks, and from then on, I didn't have to coax. He's an adult now, and he loves to read because I infected him with my love of reading. What kids need to be shown is that reading is great entertainment!
I agree. Those AR tests at school destroy any love for reading that a child may have started out with.
Showing a child that you like to read is quite different from forcing him to read.
I agree with you about reading programs in schools. Going to the library in our school district is a fun event. As a parent volunteer I was able to go with the kids to the library and be involved in the reading programs. Reading class is different from library time. In the classroom they do the reading program with books provided and then the library is where the kids get to pick any book they want for themselves to read.
Yes, there are the levels of reading that are required. My parents were both teachers and many aspects of teaching do not teach to the child but to the system. That is where we as parents do need to be very involved in reading to our children from a young age. I took my kids to the public library for fun story time, as well as to pick out books that they were interested in. It is up to us to be the standard.
Maybe a non-coercive trick is to leave cool looking books lying around for them to discover by themselves, especially in bathrooms; the kitchen and next to the computers.