How to Help Your Grandchild Become a Reader

an exclusive feature for grandparentslink.com by Victoria Waller, Ed.D*

Reading includes anything from listening to a story being read, listening to a book, reading graphic novels, joke books, Weird but True books, the Lego Magazine, National Geographic Magazine, comic books, or Pokémon and baseball cards.

Children love reading if it is based on their interests. Animals, sharks, Peppa Pig, Star Wars, the Titanic, cars, poetry and more.

When a “book” is good, it’s good no matter what form it is in. Ask your grandchild’s school librarian for suggestions or, if you have a children’s book store near you, take your grandchild there for a few hours. Even a four-year old will know what stories they want.

Check websites like Common Sense Media and Scholastic Books or Reading Rockets for updates on book lists. If it says a book is good for a nine-year old, that may mean your grandchild may be able to read it. But I have found children five and six might like hearing the book read to them because they can’t read yet. Also, be sure to check the interest level and subject matter to make sure it is appropriate for your grandchild.

What makes one child love one book or have one passion I will never know. But most children are very particular in their likes and dislikes of stories. Once a child is reading, whether it’s comic books or the Dog Man and Baby-Sitters Club graphic novels, they’ve become a reader and it will last a lifetime!

*As an educator for over 40 years, Dr. Victoria Waller has taught thousands of students to read and write using their passions and strengths; sharks, roller coasters, rocket science, the Titanic and even Pokemon, to name a few. The children learn to read, but more importantly, “love” to read, which lasts a lifetime!