Convincing Your Teen that Reading Matters
Perhaps the teenager in your family was once an avid reader, but now hardly ever opens a book, or perhaps your child never liked reading in the first place.
You know that reading is important, and you obviously want to make sure that your teenager grows into adulthood with all the skills he or she needs to succeed.
What can you do?
In this article, RIF suggests how parents can help their teenagers decide for themselves that reading is important to their lives.
With that in mind, half of this article speaks directly to young people. We encourage you to share it with the teens in your family.
Try to Avoid...
Before we list ways to encourage teen reading that do work, here are a few tactics that don't work:
- Pressuring, nagging, or bribing. Encourage your kids, but don't hound them.
- Criticizing what your teens read. Explain what troubles you about certain types of reading materials after reading them yourself. Forbid as little as possible. And whenever you can, accept differences of opinion as just that.
- Lavishing too much praise. If you catch your youngster reading, show interest, but don't make a big deal out of it. Teens need to know that they're reading for their own pleasure—not for your approval.
Ways to Encourage Teens to Read
Click here for a list of tips on how you can encourage your teenager to read.
Reading: What's In It for Teenagers?
The following suggest ideas for teens from RIF.
If you're a teenager who has lost interest in reading or never liked it much, this is for you.
We're about to make a pitch for reading—reading things that interest you, at your own pace, apart from schoolwork and other obligations.
People who like to read do it because reading does something for them. It sends chills down their spine, brings tears to their eyes, or turns on the lightbulb in their brain.
And, let's face it: they need reading, just as you do. You need reading now for school, and you're going to need it even more later on, when you take on a job and other adult responsibilities. Good reading skills are a must. Ask any employer!
Reprinted with the permission of Reading is Fundamental, Inc. ©2007 Reading Is Fundamental, Inc.
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