SEATTLE — How to Raise a Reader is a guide to help parents incorporate reading in their children’s everyday lives, setting them up for success in the future.
Written by Co-authors and editors of the New York Times Book Review, Pamela Paul and Maria Russo sit down to discuss some of the myths associated with kids learning to read, and how guardians can support their journey to find literary love.
"Just the presence of physical books in your home is likely to lead to a lifetime of reading," Russo said.
Paul and Russo emphasize that adults need to make reading environments fun in order to foster a natural love for literature, rather than forcing them into reading things they're not interested in or ready for.
Reading Myths for young kids:
Kids must learn to read as early as possible.
"There is no correlation between the age at which a child learns how to read and how good a reader he'll become," Paul said.
"It's really important for parents to take the pressure off in those years and support your child in learning to love books rather than learning to read independently," Russo said.
Once kids can read by themselves, stop reading out loud.
Reading out loud can foster bonds between parents and children. "That's a key to raising a reader, is that enjoyment and bonding and the experience of books as entertainment," Russo said.
Parents should work with children starting in preschool to teach to read.
"Leave it to the teachers," Russo said. "At home create an environment where reading is fun."
Once kids start reading chapter books, they should stop reading picture books.
"Picture books are an art form! Reading images is good for development," Russo said. Manga and graphic novels are some examples of picture books that range greatly in themes from child to adult nuances.
"Everyone needs comfort reading, everyone needs a little escape," Russo said.
ABOUT THE BOOK: "Divided into four sections, from baby through teen, and each illustrated by a different artist, this book offers something useful on every page, whether it’s how to develop rituals around reading or build a family library, or ways to engage a reluctant reader. A fifth section, “More Books to Love: By Theme and Reading Level,” is chockful of expert recommendations. Throughout, the authors debunk common myths, assuage parental fears, and deliver invaluable lessons in a positive and easy-to-act-on way" (workman)