Reading for Rewards that Teach
Kids who read more learn more, right? So you’re looking for “go-to” ways to make reading more appealing for all.
Sometimes parents call us before a workshop, concerned because their child is struggling to finish a big old book. (Journey to the Center of the Earth brought on three calls.) First, we assure them that listening to a dramatized audio version is perfectly fine – it’s the story that matters, as far as we’re concerned. No movie-watching, though! We want kids to make their own images in their own heads.
Second, we encourage them to tell their kids that there’s a reward at the end of the story: our real-life experience of it, like a field trip inside the book! Once they’ve read it, they’ll get to “live it” by doing some cool things the characters did, and by handling objects and elements straight from the story. They’ll even get to smell and eat special things that were mentioned — if they dare!
(You could also do a “field trip” in segments after each chapter or section – whatever works for you.)
Not only do kids see the light at the end of the tunnel, but they start to read with an eye out for things they might get to hold, do, smell, hear, and taste. This turns reading into a treasure hunt.
All of a sudden, that book is packed with promise – and kids want to keep turning the pages. Once they’ve experienced the reward at the end, and have seen how a story “plays out” in the classroom, they’ll want to read more.
We hope that was helpful! We’d love to hear your thoughts in the Comments.
Becky & Jenny