Parents, you are your child's first - and lifelong - teacher. By instilling a love for reading in them, you will be opening up their world to a lifetime of adventure, information, and so much more. What a special gift! Here are ways to help motivate your children to read at home.

1. Start early when they are non-readers. Use Flashcards to teach the basics. Toddlers love colorful picture books and can learn vocabulary, colors, shapes, turning pages, and other pre-reading skills by talking about pictures.

2. Read poetry, nursery rhymes and finger plays. Not only are they funny and interactive, but the rhythm makes them easy to learn.

3. Listen to books with audio content and follow along with the printed version. This should engage youngsters through different voices for different characters. Use them on long rides, Holidays, rainy days, or when you are too busy to sit with your children.

4. Buy and ask for books for presents, especially personalized books which have your children's names in them. They will want to read these books over and over again!

5. Have many kinds of books available in the house. Try to organize. For example, Separate books about animals, places, biographies, sports, and so on.

6. Read to your children DAILY. Have a special time to read together (its a great bonding experience) and let them choose the book. You will notice their interests for future purchases

7. Read with intonation and different voices for all the different characters. By sounding happy, sad, or angry, the story will come to life and the words will become more meaningful. As your children get older, let them read the words of a character so you can read together.

8. Let your children ask questions and discuss pictures. When they are older, discuss characters and plot. It will encourage their learning experience. If your children feel comfortable asking questions, that will carry over to the classroom.

9. Flashcards are a great tool for learning 'Alphabet, sight words, pictures and words'. Use Flashcard's to get your child learning the basic's there is a range available in the U.K from here

10. Write positive notes to each other and leave them around the house. A personalized note at breakfast will set the tone for a great day! Fun kids note pads can be purchased from here

11. If you have a local library, Get your children a card and make sure they use it!

12. Be a role model for your child by reading all kinds of printed material yourself, such as cereal boxes, newspapers, mysteries, cartoons, word puzzles... The more variety your children see you read, the more variety they are likely to read, too.

13. Show your youngsters that reading is a part of daily life. Do you watch television? Read a TV guide. Do you cook? Read a recipe. Do you like sports? Read the newspaper's sports section. Do you want to go to a restaurant? Read the menu. Your children need to see that reading is relevant to their lives!

14. Reward your child if you feel they have progressed in some way, perhaps they have learnt a new word or read a sentence/whole page without a mistake. Cheap and easy reward Stickers and charts are available here or you could reward your children with extra reading time before going to sleep, a trip to the bookstore, a trip to the library, a bookmark, or something else to do with reading.

15. If your child is struggling, start with their interests and let them choose books they will enjoy.

I hope these ideas are useful and inspire your own creative thinking.

And remember...Reading is FUNdamental!


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