Saturday, March 22, 2014
5 Super Strategies to Encourage Reading This Spring---& Always!
To help usher in this new and long-awaited season, we wanted to share with you a few resources to help encourage more reading this spring, whether for your children or for your students. It is very possible to combine the refreshing outdoor activities you can again enjoy with the pleasures and benefits of reading---and we'll prove it.
Springtime Strategies to Encourage Your Children to Read
1. Coordinate an Outdoor Activity with a Themed Book
Did you know that the coordinated skills required for jumping rope actually promote more brain connectivity? That's right! Why not teach your child the "how-to" of this activity, and then combine it with reading a book about jumping rope? You and your child will enjoy the benefits of this excellent physical activity AND a coordinated, literary experience---all at the same time.
Of course, it doesn't have to be the activity of jumping rope. It could be about walking, gardening, hopscotch or whatever activity you and your child or students choose to do. To get you started, however, we can recommend a couple of books you and your child might enjoy on the topic of jumping rope:
a. Hope Learns to Jump Rope---by Amy Cancryn
This is a new book published in December 1013 (paperback---Kindle eBook also available).
b. Anna Banana: 101 Jump Rope Rhymes---by Joanna Cole and Alan Tiegreen
Great rhymes and short poems for jumping rope!
c. Jumping Rope the Second Time Around---by Carlos Coffman, Bobie Capel and Samuel G. Coffman
This is an excellent book for parents when jumping rope is a "distant memory."
2. Keep Books Handy---Everywhere
Get into the good habit of carrying at least 1 or more books with you wherever you go. Store them in a tote bag or other container for "wait times" in the car. Keep 1 or 2 books in your purse for a "quick read" in a long check-out line. Slip a couple of children's books into the baby's diaper bag, too. That way, you'll be ready to read no matter where you go this spring. At home or in the classroom, carefully arrange books in baskets stored on the floor within easy reach of young children. Replace your big "coffee table books" with children's favorite books or action-packed paperbacks for teens. Just watch what happens.
3. Read on the Go---Anytime, Anywhere!
Did you know that Barnes and Noble provides a FREE Nook Reading APP for your smartphone or tablet? Yes! You can access it without charge by visiting the company's webpage at http://www.barnesandnoble.com/u/nook/379003208. That way, when you are waiting in the pediatrician's office with your children or another time when "patience" can get the better of children---AND parents, you will be ready to read to your children or provide them with an e-book they can read. If you prefer the Kindle app for smartphones and tablets, you can access it from Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html?docId=1000493771.
4. Organize a Children's Book Club
Start a children's book club in your community or classroom. Give the club a name that the children suggest or recommend. You can even have a naming contest with a favorite book as a prize for the best or creative name. You can even award "stars" for library visits or bookstore "browsings." Your neighbors and parents will thank you in spades!
If this idea sounds a bit daunting, it could easily be implemented on a smaller scale for just your family with parents (or grandparents) and children each having opportunities to read aloud and share ideas about main characters, plots and more. This kind of activity will not only encourage literacy in your family, but it will also draw the family closer together with the good quality time spent.
5. Plan a Few Library "Field Trips"
Finally, don't be afraid to take a walk to the library (even the school library!) If your local lending library is within walking distance, try it with your child. Talk about the books you read last week or discuss what kinds of books you will be searching for when you arrive at the library. If walking is not feasible, the same conversations can be had just as easily in the family car or in the classroom before and after these visits. Don't be surprised if you end up creating some "good old days" memories for you, your child or your students in the process.
We're hoping that you find these strategies will help you promote literacy in your family or classroom this spring season. Who knows? Perhaps these ideas will start a few new, good habits that will last well past springtime, into the summer---and ALWAYS!
For information on customizable reading tools for ADHD & other reading challenges:
www.FocusandRead.com Tools for struggling readers of all ages!
www.BrennanInnovators.com Info & support for struggling readers
Image courtesy of:
Brennan Innovators, LLC at www.focusandread.com