We all know that reading with our children is an important thing to do. It’s a great way to bond with them, to introduce them to new and exciting worlds, and to also help them develop essential literacy skills. But sometimes, it can be hard to find the time to fit reading into our busy schedules. Between parents working and kids’ extracurricular activities,  it can be tough to make reading the priority it should be.

Here are some tips on how to make the most of your reading time with your children so that you can both enjoy the experience and maximize its educational value.

Set aside a specific time each day for reading. Let your child know in advance when this time will be so that they can look forward to it. If possible, try to make it part of your child’s daily routine so that it becomes a habit. For example, you could read together after breakfast or before bedtime. When it’s time to read, turn off all distractions like the TV, your phone, and any other electronics. This will help both you and your child focus on the book.

Choose books that are appropriate for your child’s age and interests. If you’re unsure what to select, ask your child’s teacher or a librarian for recommendations. It’s also a good idea to mix things up and read a variety of genres so that your child is exposed to different types of writing.  You can also look for online booklists specifically tailored for kids of different ages. Older children may enjoy chapter books, while younger ones might prefer picture books or easy readers. Joining a local library is an easy and inexpensive way to access a huge variety of children’s books.

As you’re reading, take the time to discuss the book with your child. Ask them questions about what’s happening in the story and why they think certain characters are behaving the way they are. Not only will this help your child engage with the material on a deeper level and think critically about what they’re reading, but it will also give you insight into their thoughts and feelings. 

Finally, don’t forget to have fun! Reading should be enjoyable for both you and your child. If you’re feeling stressed or rushed, it will likely show in your voice and body language, making your child less likely to want to read. So take a deep breath, relax, and enjoy the time you’re spending with your little one.

Reading with your children doesn’t have to be a chore, and it shouldn’t be. By setting aside some dedicated reading time each day and choosing books that are right for them, you can turn it into a fun and enjoyable activity for the whole family and time that everyone looks forward to!