Today, our children are surrounded by fanciful toys and gadgets. These vie for their attention with books - an important source of knowledge and imagination.
There are many ways to cultivate the love of reading and one way is to provide a conducive and inviting environment.
1 - Choose the right spot
Select a spot in your house that is easily accessible by the children. Furnish it with beanbags and comfortable seats for reading. Preferably somewhere with natural light, but remember to use shades if there is direct sunlight which will render the spot uncomfortable to stay too long in.
2 - Put books within reach
If you have children of different age group, arrange the books in such a way that each child is able to reach and select his own books. E.g. put your toddler’s book on the bottom shelf and save the higher shelves for the older kids.
3 - Book arrangement
Arrange books by genre, separating the fiction and non-fiction books to enhance sensitivity to text types. Rotate the books once in a while according to theme to make it easy for them to find out more about the topic that they are currently exploring.
4 - Set aside time for reading
Create a routine by setting aside time for reading as a family. How many of us are guilty of asking our children to read while we swipe away on our handphones right next to them? 🙋♀️ Role model by reading your own book alongside your children (no, reading news from your handphone or tablet do not count! 😉). Put away your electronic gadgets for a distraction free quiet time. When your children sees you reading a book, chances are, they will do the same.
Creating an inviting space is important, start off small with some shelving and build up your library from there. Sometimes, keeping distractions away can also be as simple as hiding the toys in another part of the house (out of sight, out of mind). Put up your child's drawing of story book characters so that he/she has ownership of the place.