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How I Get My Reluctant Son to Read Books

By Isabel Kallman

This post is sponsored by Chronicle Books’ Ultimate Adventure Series for Kids

Chronicle Books asked me to share how I get my son to read in a video post. I wasn’t an eager reader at 9 years old and neither is my son right now. So, here’s what I do.

I would love to hear what you do to get your kid(s) to read. Please leave a comment below to be entered to win a set of the three Ultimate Adventure books from the Worst-Case Scenario series: Everest, Mars and Amazon. I’ll be giving one set away (giveaway rules below).

The books are great and my son thought it was so cool that you could skip ahead based on the choices you made in the books. It’s an added level of interactivity that makes it feel like a game.

Here’s a the book trailer for the Mars Ultimate Adventure book.

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Giveaway Rules: Please leave a comment below (only one comment per reader, please) to enter the giveaway of one set of three books of The Ultimate Adventure Series. One winner will be chosen at random using random.org. Entries will be accepted until Tuesday, May 1, 2012 at 11:59pm EST. The winnner will be contacted via email. If the winner fails to respond within 48 hours, another random winner will be selected. Giveaway only open to contestants 18 years or older and residents of the U.S. Good Luck!

Isabel Kallman
About the Author

Isabel Kallman

Isabel Kallman is the founding mom of Alphamom.com.

Feel free to send nice emails to isabel[at]alphamom[dot]com.

...

Isabel Kallman is the founding mom of Alphamom.com.

Feel free to send nice emails to isabel[at]alphamom[dot]com.

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Fairly Odd Mother
Guest

Oh can I empathize. My oldest LOVES stories but not to read it herself. We’ve done a bunch of audio books and I read aloud to her a lot even though she’s 11 and could read almost anything herself. I love your tips too. . .she just read a child’s biography on J.K. Rowling (like your son read Steve Jobs!). And she adores graphic novels and comic books—anything with pictures—and Marcia Williams does great comics based on real literature (Shakespeare, Dickens, ancient Egypt stories). And the “You Wouldn’t Want to Be” series is just the right mix of real history… Read more »

Elizabeth Hosto
Guest
Elizabeth Hosto

My son loves to be read to but is just getting into the reading by myself stage. He will fight it when he brings me a book to read to him that I know he can read, sometimes we will read it together, sometimes I can get him to read to his little brother or Grandma. He loves audio books and the deal he made with his Dad is that if Dad downloaded all his favorite Magic Tree House books that he would follow along while they are being read to him. I also try to focus on things that… Read more »

Dana
Guest
Dana

My son is just like yours — loved to read until it was homework. I also seek out books that he likes — right now his favorites are Captain Underpants and Goosebumps.  This does help and he is starting to look forward to reading. I also have a daughter in Kindergarten who is just beginning to read. She’s very excited about being able to do it like her big brother and I want to encourage that. What I started over Spring Break and I’m going to carry on over Summer Vacation is “Family Reading Time”.  I drove them to the… Read more »

cher
Guest
cher

My son never wanted to read, he only wanted to play and watch TV, so I combind them. For a long time hes was into Thomas the Train, so I got every Thomas book out library had, and then I ordered the complete original set in one book. I read that to him at least 10 times, 2-3 stories a day. Then he moved on to Legos, so I started getting Lego theme books (about building Legos and also Lego story books). Then it was Star Wars and Clone Wars…. You get the picture. He is still a ‘picky’ reader,… Read more »

Stephanie
Guest
Stephanie

We have a chore chart where my son has to do 30 minutes of reading a day (quiet reading time). Every Friday afternoon after school I take my kids to the library to pick out 3-4 books. They can choose anyone they wish – I’m trying to promote subjects that he likes – which seems to be working too (basketball, bmx biking really anything). I’ve found I can get him to read too if he reads to his sister and feels like he’s teaching her something.

Ally
Guest
Ally

My son is just starting to learn how to read. So far he really enjoys it because we spend special one on one time together when we do it. I’m curious to see how he will be with it in a couple of years.

EMO
Guest
EMO

Max and I go to the library regularly.  Just being around books each week gets him interested in reading them more.

Marlen
Guest
Marlen

I only see my stepsons during the summer. It’s been a real challenge to get them to pick up a book – but they don’t mind being read to. I actually really enjoy sharing reading time with them, and during the time they are not with us try to find interesting books to read next time we’re together. Some of the books I found turned into personal favorites, too – and they’re a nice change of pace from my usual reads. The 39 clues series is great, because they can go online and play games that tie into the books… Read more »

Ms. Huis Herself
Guest

We’ve read to our two kids every night before bed since pretty much forever. Now my 7yo is such an avid reader that we’ve had to institute the “no reading on the stairs so you don’t trip & break your head open” rule. 🙂 The 4yo is well on her way to becoming a reader as well. I’d say, read early, read often, read to them books you loved as a kid & go ahead & ham it up! Books are FUN! Let them experience that.

Lindsay
Guest
Lindsay

Great video… Very helpful. Thank you Alphamom!!!!!

tasterspoon
Guest
tasterspoon

Whenever my parents took my brother and me shopping when we were young, it was understood that there would be no toys or candy BUT we would always stop for a while in a bookstore and my parents would spend *any amount* on books we chose. Really! Even the big, hardback, full color glossy photo books about airplanes that my brother invariably chose. It really made a point about values (and my brother continued to prefer non-fiction – but so what? – though he did move on to Clive Cussler type novels and ultimately grew up to be a Naval… Read more »

tasterspoon
Guest
tasterspoon

Unrelated: I love that display of vases behind you in the video!

Jamie
Guest

I have a 9 year old son, and he certainly isn’t the voracious reader that his sister is. It’s really about finding the right kind of books, I think. Each of my three kids has loved the Diary of a Wimpy kid series. And we try to still read aloud each night, too, as a family.

Ciara
Guest
Ciara

I must have these books they sound so cool. They’ll go well with the bookmarks I recently got from your site!

Deborah
Guest
Deborah

For us it’s all about treating reading as a privilege and a joy. My son is fortunate to have a teacher who understands that book reports often have the downside of sucking the joy out of reading, so we’re not required to do those. From there, it’s all about providing content that appeals to the child. Certainly what he reads isn’t to my tastes, but then, I’m sure he would be bored stiff by my choices too!

JessicaB
Guest
JessicaB

Our LO is too young to read, only 3 months!! But my husband was worried that his reading “voice” needed work. So he practiced on me in the car while I drove. I loved it. Because Kira is still young yet, I can get away with reading my political magazine to her, but in a story voice. My husband finds it hilarious to listen to me read about MITT ROMNEY and the PRIMARY CAMPAIGNS! or PRESIDENT OBAMA and his PLEA TO CONGRESS!!

Andee
Guest
Andee

Both my husband and I like to read, so our daughters see us reading for fun all the time. The oldest like to read, the 2nd is learning. We like to have them read to their baby sister. They like that a lot. Family story time is fun too – we are currently reading Harry Potter together.