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7. Write a special message.
When giving your child a book as a gift, write a special message on the inside, sharing with him how much you look forward to sharing this book with him, or how proud you are that he is reading so much. This will strengthen the bond between the two of you, and make the habit of reading even more enjoyable for him.
8. Read in front of your child.
Children learn by example. If you enjoy reading, they will learn to enjoy reading just by watching you. Take the time to cozy up at home with a book you really enjoy, or even the newspaper. Children will see reading as a part of home life, and often will start to do the same.
9. Share with them what you learned from reading.
During dinner, or at anytime throughout the day, share the things you read about in your books. Offer insights such as, "This book really made be think about the importance of appreciating what you have," or "I loved reading the part where the woman was faced with a life-changing decision, it reminded me of a time when I was young." When sharing preface your comment by saying, "I read today," so your children see other positive examples of how reading enriches your life. Likewise, tell your family about what you read in the newspaper, or what you learned from a magazine or blog.
10. Read your children's books.
Imagine a day when your 10-year-old son finishes reading a 400-page novel, passes it to you and says, "you should read this mom, I'm sure you'll love it. It has a really emotional part in it." This can happen. When you spend years reading together and talking about books with your child, you will develop a bond and common interest. Your children will begin to know what books appeal to you and vice versa. Reading creates confidence in children and sets the foundation for them to read more complex stories as they mature.
Literacy is one of the most important skills you can teach your child. Take the time to foster this skill at home in a way that is fun and appealing and your child will learn to take pleasure in books, rather than viewing reading as a chore.
Natacha V. Beim is a parenting expert, teacher, international speaker, published writer, and the founder or the successful Core Education & Fine Arts Junior Kindergarten schools. You can reach her at natachabeim.com.
Also see: How to Raise a Confident Reader