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GETTING KIDS TO READ



Published: Mon, June 11, 2001 @ 12:00 a.m.



GETTING KIDS TO READ

Encourage children to read aloud. Kids of all ages enjoy reading aloud to their parents and peers. It lets them show off their ability and allows the parents to spend quality time with their children.

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Take summer field trips to the bookstore or to the library. Take time out to browse through a store and allow them to pick out their favorite book. Point out books that might be of interest to them.

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Keep books in the car or tucked in backpacks. Children on-the-go can read books while traveling this summer with their parents. In a car, on a bus, sailing on a boat or flying in a plane, a book makes a perfect companion.

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Encourage the reading of a series. When kids fall in love with a series, their next book is easy to find. They will most likely love them all. By the time they are through the series, they are reading better and have begun to form the habit of reading. Every summer should be a challenge to get through a new series.

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Connect reading with summer activities. Riding bikes, skateboarding, swimming, sleep-overs and building secret forts are all part of summer fun. Find books that match your children's interests and they will connect reading to these favorite activities.

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Location, location, location. Encourage children to read books where they are comfortable. A good book knows no boundaries, whether it's on the porch, by the lake or in a tree house. Changing the location can add loads of fun to summer reading.

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Books make great gifts. The next time your children are invited to a birthday party, give a gift certificate to the local bookstore. There the birthday boy or girl can find the best gift of all -- the ability to use his or her imagination.

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No lights out. Don't give your children a lights-out time at night. Let them read as long as they want, especially in the summer. Your children will feel grown up, and who knows? Reading before bed could develop into a lifelong habit.

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Relax a little. Avoid overcommitting your children to too many activities. Between swim lessons and summer camps, they often are too tired to sit down and relax with a book. Let them know that lying on the bed reading a book is not a waste of time.

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Show your children you value reading. Whether it's a daily paper, a paperback or magazine, parents should spend time reading. Try to open a geography book while the family is watching television to learn about and discuss a far-off place.

Source: BiG GUY BOOKS Inc.




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