Reading Tips For Parents & Educators

Find expert reading strategies and useful tips to help introduce children to the wonderful world of reading on their own with I Can Read!

8 Ways to Refresh Your Child’s Reading Routine

Fall into new habits and get creative with your reading routine.

There’s a lot of buzz around the importance of incorporating reading into your child’s daily routine. Reading for at least 20 minutes each day has many benefits for skill development. However, story time shouldn’t feel like something you need to check off your “to-do” list. Here are eight ways to breathe new life into your child’s reading routine and inspire healthy reading habits in the process:

1. Create a reading nook.

Do you have a favorite place to read? Maybe your child likes to read in their bed. Switch things up and try building a fort, or creating a cozy corner filled with books, pillows, and stuffed animals. Need some more inspiration? Check out the hashtag #readingnook on Instagram.

2. Read at a different time of day.

A lot can be said for reading habits, but don’t feel as though you have to stick to reading at the same time every day. See if you can squeeze in a story right when your child wakes up, before nap time, or after school. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, you can always have them read to you while you make dinner, or try putting on an eBook to listen to together.

3. Talk about books over shared meals.

Talking about the books you’re reading can be just as important as actually reading them! Think about ways to bring up themes from a book you are reading while the whole family is together. This way, reading is incorporated into daily conversations that go beyond your designated reading routine. 

4. Go on a book-themed outing.

Think outside the book and plan a field trip or weekend activity based on something you’ve read. Read Play Ball, Amelia Bedelia and take a trip to a local baseball game, or, read a book about Baby Shark and head to a local beach or aquarium. (Don’t worry, you can take all the credit!)

5. Get cooking! Make a meal from a children’s book.

Some of our favorite books incorporate food. Fancy Nancy, for example, loves tea parties. You could make cookies or finger sandwiches with your child and have a tea party when you finish a book. You could also find a story that features a character in another country or location. Research local foods where the character is from and have a dinner or dessert that the character might enjoy!

6. Create a children’s book club. (Bonus: dress up in character!)

Choosing activities for your child can be daunting because the options are seemingly endless. Why not make one of those activities related to reading? Gather a small group of friends and have them all read the same book, or different books about the same character. Suggest they choose their favorite scene and meet to discuss and play. Hint hint: The I Can Read! Book Club introduces kids to new character friends each month!

7. Attend a story hour.

Local libraries and bookstores can be a great resource to help develop a reading routine. Many of them have free story hours on a weekly basis! Grab your child and go whenever it suits you, whether it’s after school or during the weekends.

8. Carry a book with you.

Entertaining kids during downtime can be tricky. Have a book for them on hand so you can read if you’re waiting at the doctor’s office or for a sibling to finish a swim lesson. Don’t forget your book either! When your child sees you reading, they’ll catch on that it’s a cool thing to do. I Can Read! paperback books are a great option to carry around in your bag because they’re lightweight and portable.