Rule 1. Get Everyone To Commit
Don’t say “Hey kids, we’re going to start a family reading group!”. (We can hear the teenagers running a mile already.) Simply carve out a chunk of time for the whole family, and make it clear that everyone in the family is going to do it. Even if it’s just one hour a month, reserve the time, get everyone to commit (did we mention that: EVERYONE. Mum, Dad, gran, everyone who lives in your house), and all sit and read.
Decide what you are going to be reading ahead of time. Let the kids choose what they are going to read. Do not choose books for them, or insist on reading books that they have to read for school. Don't stop them choosing comic books, or books that you think are 'too easy’ for them. It is their choice, they are learning to choose themselves. Nothing is off the menu.
Rule 3. Do It Together
All agree to read in the same room. It’s important that everyone sees everyone else read, and that no-one is bunking off.
Rule 4. Have a Ritual
Have a ritual to start the read. Stack the books on a table or shelf before the allotted time. Go through the routine of switching off all electronic gadgets, leaving them in another room or putting them in a drawer. Whatever. Disconnect as many devices, WiFi routers, etc. as you can to create as calming an environment as you are able. Agree on a finish time and start reading.
After the allotted time (eg ½ hour, 1 hour) put your books down. Share what you’ve just read. Say whether you liked it, or disliked it, why you were glad you chose this book, and which book you might like to read next time. And agree to do it again.
And that’s it. Email us or post a message below if you’ve done it. Let us know what worked and what didn’t work for you – we'll try to share some experiences.
And if you don’t know where to begin in terms of some books to start your group...you know who to ask, don’t you? Come into Mostly Books and if you need some help in choosing some good books to get started... that’s what we’re here for.