Reading is a good habit to start from young as this not only allows children to develop creativity and a good imaginative mind through active learning, but also extend their patience and attention span to prepare for comprehension in the future. However, many primary school students, especially lower primary, are used to television and digital devices and this results in passive learning where children are devoid of much creativity and imagination.
In order to inculcate a good reading habit, parents need to take a proactive role in getting their children to get more involved in reading. Giving children the chance to flip pages and take in the words in a much measured pace allows time for children to absorb and process information in their minds. This is a good way for children to take in knowledge and grow their patience. Here are some tips to develop a good reading habit for children.
#1 – Restrict the time for television and digital devices
Spending time in front of television and digital devices (such as smart phones and tablets) is not really good for children. Firstly, children can only take in knowledge passively. This cultivates a bad habit of waiting for information to be fed to them. Moreover, with advertisements appearing throughout the programs will divert children’s attention from the actual program. This serves to shorten their attention span and decrease learning efficiency. Most importantly, strong light from the screens may cause their eyesight to deteriorate, resulting in myopia and even astigmatism.
#2 – Start a parent-children reading session regularly
Parents should have such reading sessions regularly (at least twice a week) with their children. In this way, children will be able to sit down and start to read with parental support. This provides comfort and assurance to children, allowing them to be able to relax and truly enjoy reading. By having such sessions, the bond between parents and children will also be strengthened!
#3 – Hold story telling sessions
After completing a book, parents can encourage their children to tell the stories to their family, relatives or even peers. This can cement the knowledge gained from books in children’s minds as they tell the stories. Moreover, they can learn to be more assertive and gain confidence through such session as they actually ‘performing on stage’!
With these tips, we can cultivate children’s reading habits and through these sessions, build up their knowledge, language communication skills and confidence in front of a crowd!