How many children do you know who would rather read a book than play outside? Not many, right? Children these days are more likely to pick up an iPad or video game controller than a book—not because they don’t like reading, but because they think it’s boring. You can change this mindset, though, and make reading fun with these 5 ways to make reading fun.
1) Make it an Experience
If you’re reading a book that has some type of theme, you can use your imagination as well as creative writing abilities and make it into an experience. Think about what you would want if you were in that story and write about it. Or ask yourself how things would go differently if you were in a certain character’s shoes. Let’s say you're reading on a trip through Europe; how would things change if you were traveling during WWII? There are tons of experiences to draw from and lots of ways to get creative!
2) Tell stories with your child
One way you can make reading fun is by telling stories together. You may not be a natural storyteller, but we're pretty sure your imagination is better than most. So, if your child loves books, why not use them as inspiration for your own creative and adventurous stories? Just take a look at some pictures from a children's book and then let your imagination run wild with ideas for how those scenes play out in real life. Give it a try with any old storybook—we bet you'll have fun!
3) Read in different environments
Reading in different environments can create a more interesting experience and make reading fun again. Sometimes, we get so used to reading at home that it starts feeling like a chore—but if you make time for your books in new places, it’ll create some fun memories and boost creativity. Head to a coffee shop during lunch or read outside on a nice day—it’s even better if you pack something tasty or bring along a friend who’s also willing to read (read: not talk). Mixing up where you read can also spark your imagination, meaning you might even find yourself thinking about your book when you’re not reading it!
4) Play games
While books aren’t toys, they can be made into something that’s fun and enjoyable for kids. For example, reading a book together and then playing a game such as hangman based on it is a great way to make reading fun. Or use a book's plot as inspiration for an outdoor scavenger hunt. Also, you can always explore Choose Your Own Adventure books to engage even more! The Choose Your Own Adventure series was created by Edward Packard in 1979 and consists of 200 books written between 1979-1998. In each book, readers are given options throughout which determine their storyline. Although some stories end up with tragedy or death, there are also plenty of endings where everything turns out well. Other versions of these types of books exist such as some of the Goosebumps series where you can choose how the story will end, now if those aren't like playing games, then I don't know what is!
5) Have a designated reading spot
In a perfect world, you’d love to spend your free time reading on your bed with your pet curled up next to you. But, let’s be real: Most of us don’t live in a dream world. And if you have kids (and it doesn’t matter how many kids), life is messy and often chaotic. It’s even more challenging to find time for yourself. Set aside an area in your home that can be reserved just for relaxing with a good book or audiobook (you can even build an audio nook). Your refuge will not only make it easier for you to relax and enjoy your favorite books—but it might also set an example for other family members who also need some alone time.