How to Encourage Your Child to Love Reading

Even before they start to go to school in Singapore, children can be encouraged to develop a love for

reading. 

At home, you can start reading to your child and allow them to be curious about the world

around them—and the worlds only found in books. This can be a great foundation for your child and

prepare them to attend a preschool Ang Mo Kio parents trust.

At an early age, they can learn preliminary skills that will help them get into the habit of reading—skills

such as recognising letters, knowing the sound of each letter, building their vocabularies, and telling

stories of their own. While it’s no guarantee, exposing your child to the written text and the things they

represent will help your child build a fondness for reading.

If you want to further encourage your child to enjoy reading, consider these tips.

Read Books to Your Child



The most effective and simplest way to inspire your child to love reading is to read to them. If possible,

expose them to books and other written materials every day. On top of encouraging your child to desire

to learn reading, this can be a daily bonding activity that the both of you can look forward to each day.

Pick a comfy spot in your home and curl up together with your child. When reading to them, make sure

you focus on your child and the material you’re reading. Try not to be distracted by work emails,

household chores, social media, and other distractions. This will help create a positive association with

reading that your child will remember for years to come. It may be the core memory that inspires your

child to enjoy reading.

Act Out Scenes in the Stories Your Read

Aside from being a bonding experience, storytelling can be a fun activity for you and your child. Act out

the scenes or expressions you find in the stories and do different voices for the characters. Exaggerate

some of the words and statements to make the story even more fun. You may also want to include

props and turn the reading activity into a show of sorts. Adding these special touches to each reading

session will help keep your child entertained and focused on the story. This will also help them

comprehend the story better.

Use Every Opportunity to Talk about All Types of Written Text

While reading to your child can help ignite their interest in the activity, it’s also a good idea to start

making them more aware and knowledgeable of the texts and words that are part of their daily

life.Whenever opportunity presents itself, talk about the letters, numbers, or words that can be found in

your child’s environment. For example, point out some of the street signs that you typically see when

you’re outside. Also bring their attention to the text found in such mundane things as store signs or food

labels, like the brand names of their breakfast cereal or orange juice. This can help spark your child’s

curiosity and take up reading on their own. 

Discuss How Words Are Written

During your story reading sessions, try to make the connection between reading and writing. You can

show your child that reading English texts typically involves making sense of the written words from left

to right or from top to bottom. Also, let them take notice of the spaces between each of the words. This

can help ignite your child’s interest in how words are written and formed.

Introduce Phonics



Another way to encourage your child to read is to teach them the sound and letter associations needed

to pronounce each word correctly. Most phonics lessons should start by teaching kids about letters and

the sounds they generally represent. Afterwards, they can be taught standard digraphs and blends,

which involve combining these individual sounds to form distinct words.

Some preschools already make use of similar methods when teaching children to write and read. One

example is Literacy Through I.T., which is a computer-based, multi-sensory instructional system that

helps children learn to write even before learning to read. The system focuses on letting a child learn

the sounds of letters needed to write words. As a result, the child learns to write any word they can say,

even if the words they come up with aren’t of standard spelling. This helps children become more

familiar with the sounds of letters and words, further encouraging them to read new words and phrases.

Let Your Child Pretend to Read

If you see your child picking up a book and imitating how you read, let them be and encourage them

further, even if it’s just playing pretend. Experiencing the physical tasks of holding a book and reading

can set them up to love reading as an activity when they finally learn how to read for real..

If your child is not yet able to actually read, encourage them to explore the images in a book and

to make up stories about them. This will help widen their imagination, allow them to practise

storytelling, and let them learn to appreciate details, which is key to developing comprehension and to

absorbing knowledge for later in life.

Allow Your Child to Participate During Reading Time

When it’s time to read to your child, share the written work with them.  Ask them to participate in the

storytelling. For example, before turning to the next page or reading the next paragraphs, ask your child

what they think will happen next. Once you’re done with a book, you can also discuss with them if they

have an idea about an alternative ending. This allows your child to explore the story further using their

own imagination, which may encourage them to read more books—works of fiction, in particular—in

the future.

Create a Home Library

If you want to encourage your child to love reading, surround them with books. Consider creating a

home library or a reading nook where all your child’s books can be stored or displayed. You can also

build excitement around books by giving them as gifts and by making regular trips to bookstores and

libraries. Your child will likely see the latter as fun adventures that will make them more excited to read

more books going forward.

With your support and encouragement, your child can develop a love for reading. Beginning at home,

expose your child to written texts, build the foundation for loving books, and encourage them to create

stories of their own. These practices can help your child become more interested in reading, and these

will allow them develop the reading skills they’ll need once they attend preschool and higher school

levels.

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