By Melissa Chapman
March is “National Reading Month.” Founded to celebrate the birthday of Dr. Seuss, the favorite author of millions of children, it gives kids and teens a chance to improve their reading skills and make reading a daily habit.
National Reading Month is an excellent opportunity for parents to spend more time with kids and books. It is never too early to help children develop reading skills. Reading regularly maintains positive mental health throughout life. Some encouraging outcomes of reading include enhanced motivation to read, better achievement of reading skills, and more productive community partnerships.
How might you celebrate National Reading Month? Below are some examples. Make family story time a fun nightly tradition. Substitute movie night or game night for reading night and have the whole family sit together in the family room and read. It is good to remember that reading doesn’t have to be saved for just bedtime. Make reading a part of your whole day.
Make connections to real life events. Have your child do a project related to the book. Make reading exciting by changing your voice for each character or making sound effects. Bring the story to life by acting it out.
Picking out books can be just as fun as reading them. Take your child to the Warsaw Community Public Library and let them choose what books they would like to bring home. Let your child hear story “read-alouds” from other adults. WCPL offers age appropriate story times weekly.
Carry books with you. Keep selections in the car and the most used rooms of your home. Give books as gifts. Create a reading nook at home. Place as much value on books as you would toys. Consider giving your child a device to read eBooks. Also, keep some of the apps on your phone geared toward reading.
Dr. Seuss wrote, “You’ll be on your way up! You’ll be seeing great sights! You’ll join the high fliers who soar to high heights.” National Reading Month can give children a new perspective as they rise to new heights, one book at a time. No matter what you do, make sure you instill the love of reading into the next generation.