My daughter, Mary, is a voracious reader and nothing pleases me more than to hear her talk excitedly about a new book that she’s reading. When her brother, Ethan, was younger he enjoyed reading Choose Your Own Adventure books with my dad. Say it out loud with me: reading is a GIFT you give your child.

Colorin Colorado, a bilingual site for families and educators of English language learners explains the importance of child literacy:

“By giving your child the opportunity to read, you are giving them the opportunity to become stronger readers and students. The gift of reading may start with a simple book or story, but its rewards will be discovered years later when an adult remembers his favorite story as a child, succeeds in achieving her goals, and remembers story time as a part of the day that he/she would look forward to. The gift of reading lasts so much longer than the holidays — it truly is the gift of a lifetime, and is one of the most special things you can share with your children.”

Inspiring our children is easier than you might think!

  • Share conversations with your child over meal times and other times when you are together. Children learn words more easily when they hear them spoken often.
  • Introduce new and interesting words at every opportunity.
  • Read together every day. Spend time talking about stories, pictures, and words.
  • Be your child’s best advocate. Keep informed about your child’s progress in reading and ask the teacher about ways you can help.
  • Be a reader and a writer. Children learn habits from the people around them.
  • Visit the library often. Story times, computers, homework help, and other exciting activities await the entire family.
  • Get involved in your community! The NIFL has a Literacy Directory you might find helpful:

Reading can (and should) be enjoyable for every child. As a mother, I’ve seen first-hand with my own children how much a child can love to read, if given the right tools.

Desiree Townsend

Desiree is a thirty-something Christian wife and mom living in the suburbs of Boulder, Colorado. Her passion is inspiring families with teens to build strong family ties. She and her husband founded Bold and Brave Today, a health and wellness site where their real-life bariatric stories guide families with teens to celebrate meal time, enjoy a bold and brave lifestyle, and build strong families. Desiree believes in: being kind, working hard, developing stable values, staying down-to-earth, and being accessible. Her voice is friendly, humble, honest and (mostly) practical. She strives to create real connections and friendships with her audience and she is sincerely interested in hearing from you. Follow her on Facebook or Instagram!