My youngest child, aged 3, carries around a paperback with her wherever she goes. It’s her favourite book. She obviously can’t read the text and there are only a few pencil drawings for her in the pages, but she does talk about the main character on the cover, point out things about her and will make up imaginary play about her. I guess she has learnt how important the books are to her eldest sister who loves them and so, like so very many things, wants to be in on the action.
My middle daughter also used to be in love with the books back when she also couldn’t read. She too would carry one around and sit for hours “reading” as she made up stories to the pencil drawings and text.
I have always known that it is important to read to your kids. In our house it’s mostly a pre-bed time activity or reserved for when you are sick although research says that 15 mins three times a day is the best if you can manage it. Some days I can but a lot of the time I find this hard. But bedtime reading has been pretty constant, something we always do to unwind and that we can enjoy together.
It wasn’t always like that though. I can remember despairing of whether I would ever get my kids to read, particularly my middle daughter who was the bounciest and most active. She used to just smack the book and take off. It wasn’t until I found a book that was appealing to her that she suddenly settled and started to enjoy reading and story time.
In my case it was worth persevering and reading a variety of books to find the books that my kids were interested in. How do you go with reading to your children?