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I remember as a child reading more than most of my friends. However, I never really had the motivation to just pick up a book and start reading. My class was required to read a book each month and to do a book report and presentation. It wasn’t until I was in college and met my best friend that I realized how much I love to read! Her passion for books is infectious. She would recommend books she had read and loan them to me to read. I would read them and share my thoughts and opinions with her. We have continued that trend for over 10 years now. It is so much fun having someone that can share the experience. When books become movies, we read them and then make it a date to watch the movies. We don’t limit ourselves to styles, authors, or genres. I will now make recommendations and pass them on to her. We always have a book on standby.

I know we all want to encourage kids to read. Many times it seems like a chore. Kids often are not motivated to read. What’s the point? If you HAVE to read a book, what makes it fun? I encourage my students to read. No, I challenge my students to read. Whatever they want to read, I will read with them. I challenge them to read faster than me. I will get them excited about things to come, without giving it away. I will quiz them on fun details from the book. The students that have done this with me have responded well.

Another reading motivation is to have an activity that corresponds to the book. If it is a movie, plan a date once the book is read. If while you are reading the book too, you come across an activity the main character has done or a place the character has visited, try to make it happen. Take advantage of our Ride to Reading summer activity sheet in the center. I have lots of book recommendations and ideas for activities to share if anyone needs some help. Let our enthusiasm over reading be infectious for our students and our children.

  • Jonathan December 18, 2012 3:31 AM

    I agree that it’s important to encourage students to find what they LIKE to read and start from there. Often it seems students develop a bad association with reading because they never have the experience of reading something besides what they are ‘forced’ to read.

    While it is true that every student will have at to read books throughout school that they will probably not enjoy, it is extremely important we continue to demonstrate that there are many more books out there!

    Good ideas in there!


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