How do I make reading fun for my kids when I don’t enjoy it?

Published 23 days ago

It’s perfectly normal and okay to not like to do everything your kid likes to do. Maybe you’re not waking up everyday excitedly thinking about getting to play dolls or house with your child. If reading to your kids is one of the things you don’t enjoy, we have a few tips and tricks for you to still make reading fun for your kids!

  1. Provide a variety of books for your kids to explore.

    We are big believers that, as J.K. Rowling said, “if you don’t like to read, you haven’t found the right book.” Trying out many different types, subjects, authors, and genres helps children develop preferences and find new favorites. But don’t forget to continue to introduce new books, as preferences can change and expand with age.

  2. Designate independent quiet time.

    Budget time in your routine for independent quiet time where kids can do certain approved activities, like reading and napping, or perhaps playing quietly. Having a designated time and space allows for a special time to explore books on their own without distractions. Starting with just a few minutes and working your way up to the desired time can help kids transition into this routine.

  3. Get other family members involved.

    Have an older sibling read to a younger one, or have grandparents (or aunts, uncles, and godparents) read with the kids. If they don’t live nearby, do a virtual storytime—coordinating on what books you’ll be reading so each household has a copy of the book helps, too!

  4. Utilize reading events.

    Reading time at the library can be an anticipated event for your child, and it means someone else is doing the reading so you’re not the one reading. Plus, a quick search online will bring up many virtual storytime options!

  5. Buy a new book.

    A trip to a local bookstore to pick out a book holds special magic behind it. Or help your kids peruse options online. Book deliveries are super fun, as a subtle plug for our own (serving ages 0-12).

  6. Add food.

    Pair a fun treat, a snack tray, popcorn, or a popsicle to reading time!

  7. Change up your environment.

    Reading fort, anyone? A park on a blanket is one of our favorites. Cuddled in bed in the morning is pretty cozy, too.

  8. Have your children read or recap to you.

    Even if your kids aren’t old enough to read, encourage them to “read” and make up their own story to go with the pictures.

  9. Try out a read-aloud book as a family.

    Move on to read aloud chapter books for the whole family to enjoy together! Funny stories, adventures, or have someone introduce one of their favorites. Browse classics and bestsellers for ideas.

  10. Learn to love reading, yourself!

    Some of these tips work for adults, too! If we turn the question around to “How do I, as a parent, learn to enjoy reading so that it’s more fun for my kids and I to read together?” that might be the best answer, as it results in a better experience for kids and parents.

    So buy a book for yourself—a well rated novel or one of our favorite children’s books for adults to enjoy to see if you can find something you’d like to read more! Set aside time to try and foster your own love of reading, or try an audio book to see if that’s more your style. Have a read-a-thon with your favorite treats and comfy clothes (and maybe a nap).

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