Did you know that today is National Young Reader’s Day? Young Reader’s Day was co-founded in 1989 by Pizza Hut and the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress. And where was Pizza Hut founded? Yep, that’s right … right here in Wichita, Kansas!
Young Reader’s Day is celebrated each year on the second Tuesday in November. It is a chance to celebrate with your children by reading to them and/or listening TO them read.
According to the creators of this day, it is “… a special day to recognize the joys and benefits of reading.”
Photo Credit: Rose Hill Library
What better way to celebrate National Young Reader’s Day than a trip to the library for a new book! Check out this website to find a Kansas library near you. (If yours is closed for Veteran’s Day, then try to visit sometime this week.)
Not sure where to start? Here are some of our member’s kiddos’ favorites as well as some of their own from when THEY were growing up:
Amanda Topinka, The Procrastinating Mommy / Co-Editor of KSWB: “My 7-year-old son is OBSESSED with The Magic Tree House chapter books. When I was growing up, I loved The Babysitter’s Club books as well as The Boxcar Children. But I think my all-time favorite was Patricia MacLachlan’s book, Sarah, Plain and Tall. To this day, every once in a while I will read that book again. Although now it only takes me a couple hours to read whereas when I was growing up, it took me weeks.”
Celeste Lindell, Average Jane: “When I was a kid, I loved all the Oz books. As a pre-teen, I enjoyed Nancy Drew.”
Nicole Small, A Kansas Farm Mom: “Ditto on the Magic Tree House books. And I have an old soul 12-year-old reading Louis L’amour.”
Jill Keller, Jill Keller Blog: “My kiddo is 2.5 and she LOVES the Llama Llama books, as well as Fancy Nancy. My favorites were the Shel Silverstein books, Nancy Drew, Little House on the Prairie.”
Sandy Keathley, Sandy Keathley Blog: “As a young girl my daughter read all the Babysitter books and Nancy Drew. Now she has read all the Harry Potter and 50 Shades of Gray — oh. how quickly they grow up!”
Erin O’Donnell, Trial and Erin / Editor of KSWB: “My tween just finished The Maze Runner, and he devoured everything Percy Jackson. My 3rd grader has read all the Magic Tree House – and there are more than 50! Now my youngest is just learning to read, which is like discovering a whole new world.”
As a freelance writer and blogger, books played a BIG part in my life. And I hope that I can instill some of that in my own children.
Here are Ways to Encourage Your Child to Read:
- Start reading to your child as early as possible. Personally, I read to both my boys while I was still pregnant with them. Children love hearing stories. Not only read a bedtime story, but read aloud with them throughout the day as well.
- Let your child(ren) pick out the types of books they want to read. If they want to read a book about bats … let them.
- Join a library. It’s a free way to encourage your child to read. It has a huge variety and lets the child(ren) be independent and free to pick what looks fun to read.
- We live in a digital world. Almost everyone owns something that will help with reading skills whether it’s an iPod Touch, a tablet, a smartphone, etc. There are excellent apps to help teach our child(ren) the fun in reading.
- Make reading time together a special time. Hold your kids if they allow it. Steer clear of distractions like TV and telephones.
- Ask your child(ren) questions about the story/book you just read. I still love hearing how my boys viewed the story and what their take was on it.
- Take advantage of spur-of-the-moment opportunities for reading during the course of your family’s busy day.
- Obviously kids will learn reading skills in school, but often they start to associate reading with work instead of pleasure. Sometimes, because of this, they start to lose their desire to read. And it is that desire — the curiosity and interest — that is the cornerstone to using reading and related skills productively.
Helping your child to enjoy reading is one of the most important things you can do as a parent and it’s well worth the investment of your time and energy that you put into it.
Who knows? Someday they may become an award-winning author. Or better yet — a famous blogger.
Happy Reading and Happy Young Reader’s Day!
Amanda Topinka is the owner of The Procrastinating Mommy blog. She is the mom of 2 lively boys and wife to an adult with ADHD. She lives in a small town outside of Wichita, serves as co-editor of KSWB, and also writes for Traveling Mom.