As parents, we know all the things we should be doing with our kids on a daily basis. We should make sure we have ample amounts of family time and one on one time. There should be time allotted to eat family meals and to go outside. Oh and of course, we should be reading to/with our kids every day. However the rigors of life just seem to get in the way at every turn. If you are like me, you get home and make dinner, clean up, oversee bath time, do the work you couldn’t get done at work, and the list goes on and on. Most days you are lucky if you get your kids in bed by bed time, and then you pass out shortly afterwards. So, how do you work in reading time with your children and still fit the rest in? Here are a few easy tips that will make it simpler!
I am a mom who likes to multi task whenever possible. For instance, I will run a load of laundry while cooking. Well, why not attack reading time the same way? If you are sitting in our Houston traffic with your kiddos, point our words and read them as you spot them. Then once your child knows the words by sight make a game out of it by asking questions like who can find the most words on the trip or who can find words that start with the letter A and so on. If you are out at a restaurant, mall, or a grocery store, use those menus and/or signs to spot words and work in a little reading time.
Another trick for making reading time work for you is to get a pack of reading flash cards that are appropriate for your child and carry them in your purse or backpack. The next time you are waiting at the doctor’s office, the post office or in line to go on carnival rides you can pull those flashcards out and squeeze in time to read.
Finally, don’t forget about those games in stores now that are a parent’s best helper. There are Leap Frog readers, iPads, Kindles and lots of other wonderful technologies that will read to your kids at first and then later shift them to reading and spelling words on their own. You could be cooking dinner and have them sitting at the kitchen table and ask them questions about a story they are listening to or help them repeat and spell words aloud. Even during TV time, you could turn on the subtitles to their favorite shows and use that as a tool to learn new and exciting words.
With all of these easy tips and tricks, you and your kids will be reading non-stop and not missing a beat. Plus, you are spending some great quality time together as well. A parent can’t ask for more than that!