What can we do about our kids who don’t love reading?

Today I’m sharing a few ideas, as well as a few books that just might turn your reluctant reader into a reader who stays up past bedtime, sneaking books under the covers with a flashlight.

In this episode, you’ll hear:

  • what’s more important than helping our kids fall in love with reading (it’s not what you think)
  • what we can do when a child says he’s not a reader
  • some books that are bound to grab and hold even the most reluctant readers’ attention

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Listener Guide

Use the time stamps below to skip to any part of the podcast:

  • 2:08 First, what qualifies as a story?
  • 4:50 Helping your child find the books that will light them up
  • 7:18 Book recommendations for your kids who don’t love reading (yet)
  • 8:40 The Edge of Extinction books by Laura Martin
  • 10:40 Books by Andrew Clements
  • 13:10 The Chronicles of Narnia
  • 14:38 The Fablehaven Series by Brandon Mull
  • 16:25 The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (Sarah recommends this for teens)
  • 20:17 Let the Kids Speak

Quotes to remember:

  • We want to help our kids fall in love with stories, not to fall in love with the act of reading. Enjoyment of reading doesn’t ever come first. It’s a love of stories that propels us to read. Focus first and foremost on nurturing a love of stories, rather than worrying too much about getting your child to love the actual act of reading.
  • Reading from a page is not better or preferred to hearing books read out loud. It’s true. Audio books and read-alouds count as “real reading” every bit as much as reading words from a page. If you need more encouragement on this, listen to episode 66.
  • Use the strategy of reading aloud the first chapter or two before handing a book over to your reluctant reader. It helps your child feel like you’re on the same side, rather than feeling at odds with you. It helps them get into the story without much effort. And then the impetus to keep reading comes from within themselves and not from you, which is what we’re going for.

Books from this episode:

(All links are Amazon affiliate links.)

Episode 84
Redwall (Redwall, Book 1)
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (The Chronicles of Narnia, Book 2)
Nate the Great
Encyclopedia Brown, Boy Detective
The Essential Calvin and Hobbes: a Calvin and Hobbes Treasury
Dear Pen Pal (The Mother-Daughter Book Club)
The Boxcar Children (The Boxcar Children, No. 1) (The Boxcar Children Mysteries)
Edge of Extinction #1: The Ark Plan
Edge of Extinction #2: Code Name Flood
About Average
The Map Trap
We the Children (Benjamin Pratt and the Keepers of the School)
The Mother-Daughter Book Club
Pies & Prejudice (The Mother-Daughter Book Club)
Much Ado About Anne (The Mother-Daughter Book Club)
Wish You Were Eyre (The Mother-Daughter Book Club)
The School Story
Catching Fire |Hunger Games|2
Mockingjay (The Hunger Games)
No Talking
The Report Card
Lunch Money (Rise and Shine)

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