Some kids take to reading like fish take to water. These are the kids you see sneaking books into bedrooms and reading under desks in class, the ones that move quickly from pre-chapter to chapter books with ease.
Other kids look at reading like a chore; it’s tagged in their brains next to homework and dish duty, and they believe – mistakenly – that reading is a skill rather than a pleasure, something to check off the list along with arithmetic worksheets and piano practice.
Still other kids only love reading when it’s the right kind of book. These kids often enjoy comic books and superhero stories but are uninterested in the adventures of Ramona Quimby or Old Yeller. Parents often worry that these kids aren’t reading the “right kinds” of books, not understanding that Superman comics often lead to literary classics like “The Lord of the Rings” or “Journey to the Center of the Earth.”
Meanwhile, parents and relatives often give books that don’t match the type of reader. This leads to unhappy kids and unread books. If you have one of these three types of young readers, here are the best types of books to give:
Giving gifts to the bookworm is easy, as long as you follow one simple rule: never give books that are below his or her reading level. A first grader who is reading chapter books is unlikely to be interested by picture books; a fifth-grader who is into series literature like Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone or Anne of Green Gables isn’t going to want a copy of Charlotte’s Web.
One additional piece of fun for the bookworm is to throw a birthday party themed around a particular book. Make sure it’s something both your bookworm and his or her peers will enjoy; The Very Hungry Caterpillar or Angelina Ballerina are good choices for young children, while Harry Potter or American Girl themes often work well for middle-grade kids.
Your bookhater isn’t going to get into reading until he or she realizes it’s more than just homework. Start by putting your child directly into the book. Personal Creations will personalize a book that makes your child a lead character in the adventures of Tinker Bell and the Disney Fairies, Sponge Bob Square Pants, Dora the Explorer or other popular stories. These books can be customized to fit your child’s age and reading level.
From there, help your child make the connection between reading and pleasure by taking some time to read aloud to your child before bed. Nearly all kids love story time, but when your kids get older it’s time to share some of the classic works of young literature, like Little House on the Prairie or The Hobbit. Many chapter books are designed to end on cliffhangers, always leaving your children wanting to know what happens next.
The Picky Reader
If your kid only wants to read comics or superhero stories or horse books, indulge the addiction. Remember that reading is still reading, and this fad is likely to pass in a few years. If you want, pad out the genre fiction with a few more challenging titles, like Black Beauty for horse lovers or The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes for mystery fans.
Picky readers will also enjoy a personalized book in their favorite genre, or a themed birthday party based on their favorite series, whether it involves superheroes, ballet or pirates.
Which kind of young reader do you have? Do you have favorite books to recommend as gifts? Would love to hear your thoughts!
About the Author: Jane is an online blogger who loves to write about personal finance, savings, and when she can health! Jane has been writing online for a few years now and you can find more personal finance contributions by Jane at paidtwice.com