How To Engage Young Readers


Some children may not initially love the idea of reading a book, but when they realize it equates it to quality time that you will spend with them, the phrase “go pick out a book” will often perk ears to keep young readers interested and engaged.

No matter your child’s age, reading is a great activity every day. When you mention that you will read to your child, he or she will think of reading positively as a special bonding time spent with family they love. With toddlers, you can sit them on your lap to read before bedtime; as they get older maybe it’s beside you on the sofa; and as they grow up, perhaps you give them more space and freedom with their reading. Regardless of the season of life you are in, mama, reading is a fundamental pillar to success. The beauty with reading is that it can be done anywhere and anytime! The more you read with your child, the more you will find them spontaneously picking up books to read on their own–even if it’s just to look through pictures.

Are you thinking to yourself, this is just one more thing to add to my list…? Do not fret. I’m here to tell you this doesn’t have to be a chore. All you need to do is get a little creative with reading. Below are some tips and tricks that I’ve personally used within our family that have helped my daughters become passionate about reading.

Don’t worry about spending a penny on books. 

Take a family trip to the local library. Our library system has a vast variety, and you can hold onto the books for 3-9 weeks! Pikes Peak Library District also has some awesome summer reading programs whereby young readers can receive a free book once they finish (along with other fun prizes). I’ve found that allowing your child to get their own library card is definitely a lifelong memory (and yes I had my 3-year-old take out her own library card so she would feel like a “big” girl checking out her books–there is no age limit). The Pikes Peak Library District’s summer reading program goes from June 1st-July 31st! Check out more HERE .

Having books accessible is KEY.

In our home, we have different book baskets in a few rooms, so my daughters always have the opportunity to get lost in a good book. Examples: in our bedroom, displayed on window sills, in their play loft, basement, one right by our backyard doors just in case they want to read outside and, of course, in our living room. Another random spot we always have books is in our car. We have a basket that gets switched out often and is a great way for kids to keep busy growing their imaginations while running errands.

Consider a family outing to one of our local thrift stores to buy a (new-to-them) book!

Young children thrive on getting to make choices, and one of the best examples is getting to choose what they are reading. This can also be a reward for finishing a book!

With the weather getting nicer, it’s important to remember taking a book outside can be delightful.

Perhaps you and your young readers want to grab a blanket and visit a local playground; you can have them read a few pages in between playing!

Last but not least, setting challenges is a wonderful way to excite some young readers.

Research has found that shorter, more feasible challenges help keep kids more engaged. For example, maybe it’s to read 25 picture books, then getting to go out for ice cream or visiting the local skating rink! You can decide as a family what is reasonable for you in this season.

Click HERE to check out a few printable reading logs I’ve created!

I hope one of these ideas sparks some excitement for your family.

Have any more tips? Don’t forget to share them below!