Reading is one of the most important skills for children to learn. It is crucial for academic success and personal development, and being able to read well at a young age will help them land a good job and succeed in their careers. If you are schooling your child yourself or they are enrolled in an accredited homeschool program, they can provide an excellent educational supplement. 

But books are so much more than a learning tool. They are windows into new worlds and allow anyone to escape reality for a short while. Whether your child is traveling to Narnia, Middle-Earth, Wonderland, or Hogwarts, they are grappling with important life lessons such as friendship, adversity, and compassion. They are discovering new things about the world and learning more about who they are in the process.

It would be a shame to deprive a child of all these wholesome benefits. Reading is one of the few activities in life that is 100% healthy and fulfilling. There are no drawbacks to reading too much, as the more you consume, the more intelligent and curious you become. It’s sad then that fewer children are reading books these days. Time-pressed parents often thrust iPads and smartphones into the hands of bored children, instilling negative habits into them that will continue into their adult lives.

To help your child experience the magic of reading, here are four ways to encourage them to love books.

Set an example

Children pick up a lot of behaviors from their parents. If they see you spending all your time staring at your phone at watching TV, they will emulate this. The best way to encourage them to read more is to lead by example. Spend your free time reading and talk to your child about the books you like. Kids who grow up surrounded by books will become adults who love to read.

Bring books to life

Reading aloud to children is an excellent way to cultivate a love of books. And you can use this to show them that books are more than just words on paper: they are new worlds and exciting adventures. You can use voices and act out different characters in the story, and if you want to take things further, you could even dress up.

Use their interests

If your child shows no interest in reading, a good idea is to make use of their interests. If they like sports, get them a book about football. If they are more into arts and crafts, find a book that will help them explore their passion and develop new skills. 

Discourage bad habits

Children are easily distracted, and the rise of smartphones, the internet, and social media has not helped in this regard. If you don’t limit your child’s technology use, they won’t want to spend their time doing anything else, let alone reading a book. You could set a rule of no technology after dinner time, meaning they will have to entertain themselves in a more wholesome way.

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