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Monday, December 5, 2016

Here is a great article that deals with keeping older students motivated to read. Well worth the read. Courtesy of Mind/Shift.

How to Help Students Love Reading

Getting kids to enjoy reading can be a challenge for teachers and parents. A 2015 study by Scholastic showed that reading for pleasure drops off after age eight. Of the students surveyed, 51 percent of said reading is something they like or love to do; five years earlier, that number was 60 percent.

How can we support young readers? Daniel Willingham, author of "Raising Kids Who Read," has several suggestions, including re-imagining the act of reading as having less to do with school and more with a life well-lived. Instead of telling kids that reading books will help them get good grades or find a good career, he said, make reading part of a larger family value: loving to learn.

Willingham's Tips for Raising Older Readers:

  • Make sure kids have access to books. Drop by the library often. If it's affordable, leave books lying around the house, in the car, even in the bathroom.
  • Don't control kids' reading. The temptation to "put the hammer down" for a page count may only result in a reaction and pushback. Comic books, graphic novels, and books below reading level all count.
  • Get kids involved in a peer network of readers. For example, teen author John Green has created an incredible network of readers and fans that connect online.
  • Offer reading material that draws on something they're already interested in. If there's a movie they already love, get the novelization of the movie, or a book about backstage gossip on set.
  • Don't forget that as the parent, you are the cheerleader, not the literature judge. Don't worry if it's not Shakespeare, the point is to show kids that "interesting things are found when you read print."
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