How Can I Help My Boy Enjoy Reading?
Carolyn Jaynes, Ph.D.
While research has shown that attitudes toward reading decline through the elementary years, especially among boys, there are ways to help your son get into reading.
An important first step is finding material he'll be motivated to read. Oftentimes, boys appreciate books that make them laugh and appeal to their sense of adventure and mischief. Find stories that focus more on the plot and action than on description. Keep in mind that boys are often drawn to books that come in series, with characters they come to know and care about. And try to track down books with content they can use in conversation—jokes, movie reviews, statistics, or fun facts about a favorite topic. Finally, make sure your library at home or in the community offers a range of genres including science fiction, fantasy, and magazines that your son may not be able to find at school.
For more ideas on motivating boys to read, check out Me Read? No Way! This practical guide, prepared by the Ontario Ministry of Education, offers an international review of effective ways to support boys' literacy development.
In addition, visit Guys Read, a website designed to help boys become engaged readers.
As the literacy development expert on LeapFrog’s Learning Team, Dr. Jaynes ensures that the curricular design in LeapFrog products is grounded in the latest educational research. Before joining LeapFrog, Dr. Jaynes was a reading professor at Sacramento State University, a curriculum developer for the Lawrence Hall of Science in Berkeley, and a teacher in the San Francisco bay area. She earned her doctorate in educational psychology at Michigan State University.
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