Editor's note: This post was originally published on September 5, 2016.
For many families, read-alouds aren’t the relaxing, calm, wind-down activity that they're supposed to be. And for many families, reading-aloud together is frustrating, anxiety-producing, and stressful.
For whatever reason that your family’s read-alouds need a revamp, here are ten ways to lower read-aloud frustration.
(BTW, these ideas are in no particular order. Choose one and try it if it sounds like a good fit!)
- You take the reading lead. Really, it’s okay if the parent reads and the child listens!
- Let your child choose the book. Kids want to read books that they choose.
- Read funny books. Kids also want books that make them laugh, and laughing will lighten the atmosphere for sure!
- Make reading together a habit. When kids know that a certain time of the day is ‘reading time’ there’s often less pushback.
- Get the whole family involved. Everyone reads. Everyone. Reads. Less stress if everyone is doing the same thing at the same time.
- If the child is game, agree on a SOS signal. Make the SOS (Save Our Ship) signal a hand wave, a snap, a clap, or a thumb’s up. That way, when the child comes across a word he does not know, he flashes the signal, and the parent can dive in to help.
- Don’t sweat the small stuff. Small errors? Let them go. Unless they’re meaning-changing, they can be skipped. No need to stress.
- Keep it light. Funny books, light text books, comic books. It doesn't matter what you're reading to your kids, or what your kids are reading to you -- as long as no one's taking anything too seriously.
- Listen to audiobooks. Audiobooks can do wonders for struggling readers. They can also do so much more. In fact, I'm such a HUGE fan, I wrote a post about them: 5 Reasons to Listen to Audiobooks NOW!
- Have fun! This one speak for itself. But ... if you find that frustration creeping back in, take a deep breath. Restart. Remember just one of these tips, and you'll be fine
What would you add to this list? What has worked in your family to lower read-aloud stress? Share your ideas on the Scholastic Parents Facebook page, and let’s continue the conversation!
Read all posts by Amy Mascott.
Featured Photo Credit: vectorfusionart/Fotolia