I don’t know about you, but as a parent I’ve often struggled to get my kids engaged with reading. My 5 year old is a recovering “Youtube addict,” which is a title I do not use lightly. We still have “relapses” from time to time, and it’s been well over a year since we instated the new rules: Only music on Youtube, no unwrapping videos, no mind-numbing videos. (The rule of thumb is, “are you listening to this, or are you watching this?”) This was a hard transition to make, though, so I needed to have some way to engage her during her withdrawals. I needed to be ready to fill that void for her.
If this sounds dramatic, then it’s possible you haven’t experienced children removed from their devices for any period of time… they get antsy, to say the least. That said, I didn’t want to offer her more technology, I wanted her to rejoin the land of the living, so we invested in books.
Our books of choice are Usborne books, but I’ve seen people use books from all sorts of publishers. It’s not about who made the book, a good book sells itself if we can get our kids to open them!
The middle of my three girls is the one who will revolt if there is even a HINT of manipulation involved… so I’ve taken to being more nonchalant with her, I focus my energy on introducing our youngest child to books. My middle girl is much more eager to get involved and play gently with books, because it’s just something we do now.
Like in the photo above, princess dress-up is a quick way to help them feel like they are IN the story, not just staring at a page. Developmentally this is crucial; they need to bridge reality and imagination. Children with healthy imaginations are better problem solvers, happier, and inventive. All that from a little dress up while reading a book? Heck yes! Isn’t it incredible!
- If you’re having trouble getting your child to enjoy reading, let me know! I’d be happy to learn more about their interests, and create a blog post just for them.
We are dreaming up new book-related activities all of the time, check back soon for more ideas!