Children and Books
By Sarah Holt
Children and good books go together like peanut butter and
jelly. Or salt and pepper. Read on to find out why it can be
so valuable to get the kids interested in reasding and how to
Why Children and Books Belong Together
Books can provide experiences and knowledge that are not available
to children in other ways. Books can transport them into other
worlds, other cultures, and other situations. They can be used
for resources, encouragement, or just for the fun of it.
Another reason children and books belong together? Children
not only find out more about the world, but in doing so can learn
a lot about themselves as well. They may see possibilities for
future occupations or hobbies in books, or values that they identify
with. Dreams may be triggered through books as children discover
many interesting and exciting facets of the world they live in.
The possibilities are many.
Books can also provide information that children may be uncomfortable
talking to someone else about. They can give kids tools and resources
for dealing with many things, from depression to bullying. There
are also books out there that can teach children how to talk
to others about what is bothering them in a productive and manageable
Encouraging the Connection Between Children and Books
Some children seem to love books without encouragement. These
children will often find a book that is enjoyable and use every
free moment to read it. But what about the kids who seem to cringe
when they are required to read anything? Don't despair. Read
on to find out how to encourage the connection between children
and books, when this connection does not seem to come naturally.
Find out what the child likes, for example hobbies and activities.
Then find books on these subjects. Often times it is not that
children do not like books, but that they have not experienced
ones that inspire them.
Inspiration may come from experiencing new genres. Even a
child who is exposed to a vast quantity of books may need some
guidance in distinguishing genres and finding where his/her interests
are. Encourage trying out all kinds of books, even ones that
do not appeal at first. This may take some persuasion or creativity.
For example, a reward system can be used where they earn something
once they read a book from each category, where each category
is a different genre.
Find books that children relate to. This often means one where
the main characters are in the same age range as the child. It
also may be useful to find ones where the characters are experiencing
similar life events. The more a child can relate to a book the
more they may feel a connection to it.
Bringing children and books together is an ongoing process.
In order to accommodate this it is useful to have a library card,
or access to a large quantity of books. This way as children
grow and change, the books available to them will continue to
provide what they are looking for.
Now that we have explored the connection between children
and reading, and provided tools for nurturing this connection,
it's time to go find some books!