Wednesday, March 2nd is Read Across America Day 2022!!
We are a family who loves to read and look at books. One of us even loves books so much he eats them! We read graphic novels and fiction and non-fiction and directions on a map to somewhere warm we would like to run away to! So, without further ado…here are 10 ways to read together in honor of Read Across America Day 2022!
A classic: bedtime books!
I don’t know about your house, but we need a little time to wind down before bed. So while one of us rocks our littlest guy to sleep, the other 3 usually find a cozy spot in mom and dad’s bed to read by themselves or with someone else. It is such a calm way to end our day, and we never mind doing it for a little longer when they are all enjoying it so much!
Our two middles LOVE to read together. I think it might have to do with the fact that our 7 year old loves Dog Man and The Bad Guys, and there is some really great humor for that age in there. Buddy reading with a sibling, friend, or parent can be a great way to expose your child to books they maybe wouldn’t choose themselves or a book that is at a level that they don’t or can’t read. Our 5 year old thinks it’s so much fun to read the pictures of her books to her siblings because we have made a point of telling her how good readers learn to read by first reading the pictures!
3. On the way to school
A family favorite and one we do QUITE often…quickly reading the books for homework for school in the car on the way to school!
Oh, the last-minute shouting on the way to school, “MOM! I forgot to read my book!’…well, we are all in now, buddy. Speed reading to anyone and everyone who is in the car. It might not be the most effective or enjoyable, but honestly, it happens to all of us, and I figured I should make this list as honest as possible!
This is one way to read that we haven’t dived into yet, but I have so many friends who love to use audiobooks to read chapter books with their kids. We are inching closer to starting Harry Potter with our older kids. I think audiobooks are a fun, engaging, and different way for kids to be exposed to different types of books! I have heard of families using this on road trips, which would be a great alternative to the hours we spend watching DVDs on a teeny tiny screen on repeat!
Acting out stories and poems
This is something I have loved using in the classroom because not only is it fun, but it helps kids build fluency when reading out loud, which is a great skill to have as they grow as readers. This is also something fun the whole family can participate in. So if you have a super outgoing child who is ready to perform but doesn’t love sitting down quietly to read…give this one a try!! Poems and poetry books are fun to start with, but another option is something called Reader’s Theater. They are stories that are written out into plays that you can have kids and siblings and friends and the whole family join in on!
Reading under a tent/blanket with flashlights
I don’t think much more needs to be said about the excitement that comes when reading in the dark with a flashlight! Make a little tent with sheets and have the kids find a fun spot to read in the dark with a flashlight! Finger flashlights make it even more fun!
Reading books written by your kids
I have one child in particular who absolutely loves to write. Now is everything spelled correctly? Nope! And that’s okay!! It is so important to encourage a love for writing and illustrating without putting pressure on your child to spell things correctly or use correct punctuation. There will be a time and a place when they’re ready to work on those things, and that day will come AFTER they already enjoy sustained writing time! The excitement and pride they will feel sharing their stories with family is so much fun to see!
Storyline Online reading
Sometimes we all just want to relax and have someone else read to us…enter Storyline Online! This is a fantastic website that has different celebrities sharing books of all genres. It is so much fun to hear them read with different voices and expressions and I am sure your family will love listening together!
Grandparents that live far away? Is Dad on a business trip? Thank goodness for technology!! A short picture book is such a fun way to get everyone involved and spend time with loved ones when we can’t be right next to one another! It is also a fun way for emerging readers to practice their skills to someone who truly just wants to hear their voice!
Another idea that needs no actual words. Just some cozy blankets and some feel-good books. Some of our favorite authors are Kevin Henkes and Peter H Reynolds. And a book that is my forever favorite that makes me want to run away and own a farm is Charlotte’s Web!
While there are a million and one ways to read together as a family, the important thing is to show your kids that books can be something to do for fun or when they want to relax a little or if life just feels a bit hard. Every milestone my kids have had has brought me to tears, but when they learn to read, it feels like excitement for them to have a whole new world open to them. Happy Read Across America Day 2022, friends! I can’t wait to see and hear your favorite books and ways to read as a family!