3 Top Tips for Encouraging Young Readers

It’s Book Week here in Austalia and while I am busy preparing Immy’s costume for her kindy book character parade I have invited a group of wonderful Australian early childhood bloggers to share their unique insights into reading with children. Today I would like to introduce Suz of Lovely Little Bookworms.

It’s really important for kids to grow up around books and for books to be part of their daily lives, but how do you do this and still make reading fun? Often babies and toddlers will find it difficult to sit still for an official “story time” and reading should be an active experience, so here are my top tips for incorporating books and reading into the daily lives and routines of little ones.

reading with children

Make books accessible
Don’t store your children’s books out of their reach or behind closed doors! Kids need to be able to access books whenever they want if they are to naturally integrate them into their play and regular activities. Books should be displayed at kid’s eye level, be available in the room kids spend the most time in, and be easy for kids to get to. There are numerous clever ideas for storing books but a simple box of books works fine as well.

Choose books that are engaging
There are so many amazing children’s books to choose from. If you’re not interested in the book you are reading to your child then they are going to be able to tell pretty quickly. Read a variety of engaging, interesting books on a variety of topics. Choose books with text and illustrations that are appealing to your child. Go to the library and try before you buy!

Get the most out of books
There is so much more to sharing books with kids than just reading. Include books into other parts of your children’s play – do a craft activity based on a book, get out some toys or dress ups and act out one of the stories you’ve been reading, make a playdough book scene. Capitalise on experiences your children have had: If you’ve just been to the zoo read about different animals. Planning a beach holiday? Get some books with a beach theme. Having a new baby? Use books to talk about this with your child.

And finally – just remember:

“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more you learn, the more places you’ll go.” ~ Dr. Seuss

 What is your #1 piece of advice for encouraging little ones to engage with books and stories?

Lovely Little Bookworms

Suz is a primary school teacher, mum to 2-and-a-half-year-old twins, and blogs at Lovely Little Bookworms, a blog dedicated to encouraging kids to read and parents to read with their kids.



  1. I think my #1 advice is to let children choose their own books. You can guide and advise but choice is so motivating to young (and old) readers!

  2. For kidlets who are not into ‘sit down story time’, try to make book time an active part of the day – read books in odd places (like the car, in the garden, or on the roundabout at the park), enact parts of the story, use interesting voices, and choose books that the kidlets can interact with (flaps, guess who pages, pop up stories). And choose super short ones so that they get some praise for ‘finishing’ a book!

  3. With the increased usage of iPads, cell phones, TV, etc. we need to get young children and teens more interested in reading books, but first you will have to get their attention. We all love a good spooky story. It could be the inner child in us that still fears the dark. I wrote a series of spooky stories for my grandchildren. They are intended to be read around the family camp fire (the fireplace). Moral lessons are also contained within these stories. My grandchildren loved the stories so much that I decided to publish them in ebook form on the KINDLE bookstore under the title SPOOKY MOON STORIES by RAYMOND THOR. Click here:

  4. My 2 children (ages 4 and 6) are big book lovers and I have worked hard to make that happen. I have brought them both to the library since the time they were born. My daughter loved story time as a young child but my son has never had an interest in sitting with the other kids and participating in it. That is fine with me. We still go to the library a few times a week and pick out books: lots and lots of books. I let my kids pick out anything they want to as well, whatever they are interested in, even if it seems to “old” for them. My son will choose books that are some times way to old for him but he likes the cover of the book. So we check it out and he looks at the cover or I read a page or 2 to him. I know parents that never take their young boys to the library and I think it is a shame. Even if you just go by for a few minutes and pick out one book: you are showing your child that reading is important and fun. I also have no TV in our home (as of 2 weeks ago, I got rid of it)…..I want to hear the sound of my kids not noise of TV, and now that the TV is gone, my kids are reading like crazy…I love it!

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