Tuesday, February 7, 2012

boys' reading - top 5

some time ago, i saw an article about how by the end of high school, girls score 10 points higher on reading tests than boys.  they attributed the difference in scores to girls reading for pleasure.  

so!  here are the top 5 ways i know to encourage our boys to become bookworms:

5.  restrict screen time.
4.  find "boy friendly" books - nonfiction, sports, follow his interests.
3.  carry books he likes in the car, to the dentist, anywhere there is waiting time.  we subscribe to boys life and other magazines, and i will just put them in the car when they arrive.  a nice surprise. 
2.  have a "reading dinner" when you have been together a lot so you don't feel like chatting, just bring your books to the table and enjoy.
1.  read aloud to your child.  this is a gift to you both.  my teenager was trying to read the three musketeers but the old wordings were putting her off.  when i read it to her, she "got" the humor and was able to take off independently.  my son, same thing with lord of the rings.  

note that "have your child read to YOU" is not on the list.  you must do this if your child is still in the phonics phase, learning to decode.  in the phonics phase also, you may want to take turns reading pages.  your fluent reading helps him keep the meaning of the story.  once he's fluent, having him read aloud sometimes is a negative.  if he enjoys reading to you, wonderful!  i'll share some book recommendations for different aged boys soon.  


  1. Reading dinner! Brilliant! We do all the other things, and Callum has generally been pretty good about self-regulating screen time. Until lately. I think he's feeling overworked. But a reading dinner! I LOVE it!!!

  2. this is so relevant! i love your simple, easy to execute ideas. i love the idea of a reading dinner! quite often we have reading hour on the verandah. cold drinks, favourite book and it is perfect...

  3. It feels pretty good that I can say we do four of the five things you suggest above. Yay, I AM doing something right (smile). I love the idea of a reading dinner. I never would have thought of that idea. I have a four year old son so I would be interested in what you recommend for his age group. I think I mentioned to you that we tried Harry Potter the other night...Almost there, but I think he still needs pictures. Noreen, thanks so much for taking the time to share this information with us.

  4. Both of mine, now grown, loved to read as children. We all spent lots of time as a family with books. Nice post Noreen.


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