Just one more story…please!

I’ve had quite a few friends confess that they are scared their little one won’t be a “reader” when he/she grows up. Usually this friend is someone who loves reading themselves and can’t imagine their child growing up without the thrill of a good story, read by flashlight, under the covers, into the wee hours of the night.

I’m guessing that the most effective way to cultivate a love of reading in your children is to love it yourself, but we moms love to over-worry things so here is a list of great resources, books, etc that I’ve found over the last few years that I’ve been inspired by to help my little blossoming book-lover. An amateur Reader Round-up, if you will. Also, I’ve been reading a lot about the Waldorf philosophy and it is very interesting that the founder Rudolph Steiner didn’t believe that a child should be taught formally (the 3 R’s) until they were 7! Until then, the most effective way to teach/inspire the child (reading or otherwise) was by imitation. Babies can be read board books, toddlers – picture books, and all young children should be TOLD stories so that they can foster good listening skills and their own creative imaginations! Enjoy…

  • 10 Steps to Teaching Your Child to Read” (birth-5 years)
  • Strategies to Use when Reading with a Child” (for any age!)
  • Tips for being a good Story-Teller (for any age!)
  • An interesting read: “Do Preschoolers Understand Chapter Books?” (2-5 year olds)
  • An awesome activity for older readers: Summer Book Club! (school-age)
  • Amazing project for preschoolers: DIY Audio library! side note* this seems to be one of the best options for integrating technology with helping a child love to read. Most things I’ve read about iPad apps, LeapFrog toys, etc say their marketed “jump start” hasn’t been scientifically proven (and more has been done to show the negative effects of “screen time”). In general, a living, breathing human interaction is going to do MUCH more for your kid than a screen in terms of actually teaching them something. That’s why I like this Audio library idea – it’s still YOUR voice reading to them & they have to actively turn the pages.
  • Blog post describing specifics of Waldorf philosophy of reading – I don’t know that I agree with all of it, but it is certainly interesting!

Of course some children will learn to read before 6 or 7, but how many kids are pressured to read by a certain “standard” in a certain amount of time (particularly boys) and end up accomplishing it, but out of fear instead of joy! I think the focus should be on being selective about what you read: good stories, beautiful illustrations, and timeless fairy tales – which help kids fall in love with reading.

Happy reading! 🙂


If only I had an extra closet laying around…I guess this will have to do! 😉

4 thoughts on “Just one more story…please!

  1. I love the way the “Summer Reading Club” is structured! I can list books that my son wants to read, that are maybe below his reading level, at a lower point value, and then list books at his reading level at a higher point value. Though he never wants to close his book when it’s time for bed, it’s sometimes difficult to get him to pick up a book instead of turning on the TV or playing video games. Giving points for the amount of time read could work well too. I’m not going to wait for summer to start doing this!

  2. Malcolm loves to read – I think part of it is definitely that I (and Tana) read a lot! We don’t have a TV in our living room…we have filled (and well used) bookshelves lining the walls. We read together (snuggled up in bed or on the couch), we write (Malcolm is currently writing his own StarWars encyclopedia), and we tell stories together.

    The other thing that I firmly believe in is allowing the child to read what they want (within obvious boundaries) – Malcolm’s imagination has been captured by the StarWars Universe: Movies, Toys (legos especially), games, and – of course – books! He is reading the adult novels now (he’s 9 – don’t worry we have an insider who tells us which books are ‘safe’ for his little mind/ears/eyes).

    We didn’t really do anything intentional to ’cause’ him to be a reader but our patterns of living primarily funneled towards books because it was natural for Tana and I.

    • That’s so awesome! Thanks for sharing! I agree that it is important to give them freedom to pick what they WANT to read (I had a greek mythology & “magical” phase – haha!) but then of course I worry that they will go through a Twilight phase & I immediately change my mind 😉 Btw – I LOVE that he is making his own encyclopedia – that is amazing.

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