There’s a lot of talk about raising readers these days. Homeschool parents especially are sold on the importance of reading – and pretty much everyone is now aware of the lifelong benefits of reading aloud and are trying to do everything right in this area from day one:
● Start reading to your child from from birth – or better yet, in the womb!
● Provide access for a wide selection of board books for Junior to chew on
● Make reading part of the bedtime routine
● Get your child his own library card
But after years of effort in this area, how can you know that your children are on the road to to becoming lifelong readers and book lovers? How will you know that you’re getting it right?
Here are some signs and clues that your efforts to raise a reader have paid off – even if it doesn’t always seem so rewarding at the time:
29 Signs You’re Raising a Reader
1. Skipped or missed library visits result in protests and sometimes even tears.
2. You max out the limit of book checkouts allowed on your library card – even if the limit is a generous 100 items.
3. You also routinely max out the allowable number of loan renewals.
4. Your library holds take up their own shelf. Forget their own shelf – they need their own ZIP code!
5. Your kids know how to search for and reserve books online from the library before they know how to navigate YouTube.
6. Your kids are familiar with Audible, Hoopla, Overdrive, and LibriVox and have those apps installed on their devices.
7. You barely have enough strength to carry the weight of your books home from the library. You have a selection of library bags with reinforced handles that you use exclusively for this purpose (or you’ve given up altogether on bags and have adopted using a cart).
8. You catch your broken-hearted children looking longingly into the book return after returning books.
9. Locating library books on library day is a lengthy and sometimes stressful event.
10. Your child finishes the library’s summer reading program before the public schools have even let out for the summer.
11. Your kids want to give books as presents (and are also familiar with which books are already in their friends/cousin’s collections) because …
12. Your kids LOVE getting books as gifts, maybe even more than toys.
13. A visit to the bookstore is just as exciting as a visit to the toy store.
14. Your car, and every room of your house is littered with books.
15. You’re constantly trying to re-organize your family’s existing bookshelves in order to fit in “one more book”.
16. Any book purging is met by a chorus of protests.
17. Your car has more books in it than your library’s bookmobile.
18. Your child never fails to pack a book when going on vacation or on a sleepover.
19. Your child’s bedroom is filled with books – on the shelves, piled beside their bed, even on the floor.
20. Your child takes books along on every car ride, short or long.
21. Your child asks new friends what their favourite books are.
22. You send your child outside to play and they take a book.
23. Your children have peculiar vocabularies that sometimes confuse other kids and even some adults.
24. Your child talks about book characters as though they were real people.
25. You feel the need to limit their reading and wonder, is it possible for a kid to read too much?
26. You’ve heard yourself say, “Put down that book and hurry up and eat your ice cream before it melts!”
27. You’ve considered taking a book away from your child as a consequence.
28. You have to make rules about NOT reading. No reading at the dinner table, or even no reading while your friends are visiting.
29. Your kids think every parcel delivery is books. For good reason.
Do any of these sound like your kids? Chances are you’ve got a booklover on your hands!
Enjoy watching your children grow up into life long learners, readers, bibliophiles, and congratulate yourself on a job well done!
About the Author
Alison is a Canadian homeschooling mama to three sweet girls. She views homeschooling through the lens of discipleship, education as a lifelong endeavour, and is thankful that she can begin each day anew by the grace of God. She’s a lover of good books, all things chocolate, and the great outdoors. Pretty much in that order. Alison also loves to write and share ideas which she does on her blog, Learning Mama.