10 Ways to promote reading 

1.   Read to your child. Start early and keep it up. Begin with picture books and nursery rhymes; then, when he or she is ready for longer pieces, choose chapter books. Snuggling together while exploring a favorite book will create a lifelong love of reading. 

2.   Encourage a wide variety of reading: fiction, informational books, magazines, short stories, poems, picture books, puzzles, comics, how-to, etc. And make books and magazines easily accessible. Place them within easy reach- in family rooms, by the bed, in the car. Install a bed lamp in your child’s room. Make reading unavoidable.  

3.   Set an example. Have your child see you reading! Children imitate what they see you do.

4.   Follow your child’s interests. Discover what topics your child likes and use books and magazines to open that world to him or her. Kids like to explore.  

5.   Stop and reflect. Talk before, during and after reading. Before: What do you think this will be about? During: What’s going to happen next? After: Did anything in this remind you of yourself?  

6.   Give your child time to read for pleasure. Too often, children’s time is filled with lessons, play dates, sports practices and homework. All children need space to read, write and think. The more children read, and enjoy what they are reading, the more fluent readers they will become.  

7.   Ask your child to read to you. He or she will be thrilled to do so. If the child is too young to read the actual words, ask him or her to tell you the story. You’ll be amazed how accurately a child can recite a favorite tales!  

8.   Sign up for a library card. Schedule frequent trips to the library and participate in library reading programs and author visits.  

9.   Subscribe to a variety of children’s magazines. The great diversity of topics explored by magazines allows your child to discover new interests and expand existing ones. Plus, children love getting a magazine in the mail addressed to them. Wonderful examples are Sesame Street, Sports Illustrated for Kids, Ranger Rick, National Geographic World, Cobblestone, Cricket, and, of course, Highlights for Children!  

10. Encourage your child to write. Good writers are good readers and vise versa. Encourage your child to keep a journal or to write plays, poetry, and stories. If your child is too young to write, have him or her dictate stories to you.

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