Developing a Love of Reading

As a child I loved reading. My sister and I would go to the library every week and take out the maximum allowance of books and read as many as we could. One of the extra benefits of having a twin was that we could get twice as many as we swapped and read each others after we had finished our own! We also always had a large collection of our own books at home on the shelves. So when I had children, naturally one of the things I wanted to make sure I instilled in them is a love of reading.


With a 5, 4 and 2 year old, we’re still early on in our journey and this is always a work in progress. My eldest, at 5, is progressing well with his reading, and the younger two still never too young to enjoy a book – either exploring it by themselves just looking at the pictures and words, or sharing a book with an adult.

babyziyadreading2This is Mr Z at around 3 months old. I did get overexcited and prepared him a shelf of books in his baby nursery before he was even born! We still have most of these books and they have been enjoyed by all three of the boys throughout the years, and of course we have added lots more to our collection since then.


I’ve listed many of our favourites in a book recommendations for toddlers post. I also got him Arabic books before he was born – never too early to start! We still have a couple of those, but you can see a post of Arabic books for kids which we got more recently from Kuwait.

We always have books available in the house and make time for a story each evening, which I hope will help them to stay enthusiastic about books and reading as they grow up. I want reading to be something fun, and not to be seen as a chore. I always felt that developing a love of reading is a gift, as with it you need never be bored and it opens up so many exciting and magical worlds to explore.

“There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate’s loot on Treasure Island” – Walt Disney


The time when children first learn to read is so lovely, I’ve really enjoyed seeing Z gain confidence in his reading over the past year.

“Oh, magic hour, when a child first knows she can read printed words!” — A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, Betty Smith 1943 [Click to tweet]



“To learn to read is to light a fire” – Victor Hugo, Les Miserables


In our eagerness to help our children learn, it can be easy to push them too hard or end up turning learning into a negative experience. I have had to check myself for this at times, and I found this post on what not to say to emergent readers from really positive and a useful reminder for me.

I always try to facilitate opportunities for the children to learn in a fun and less pressured way. My post on literacy activities for children gives some suggestions. Also have a look at Damson Lane blog which is currently my favourite book related blog, with lots of brilliant activities to link in with their book of the week each week.

Check my Children’s Books Pinterest board for more ideas and book reviews.

A final message from Baby Z…



Image source: (pin picture) Shutterstock (modified)

36 thoughts on “Developing a Love of Reading”

  1. I didn’t realise it was world book day. Do they still get a book token at school? I have been trying to make more time for reading myself and really enjoying some good books lately. Reading for fun is definitely a great thing to encourage 😉

  2. Thank you so much for including Damson Lane. I am really enjoying sharing our favourite books and fun things to do alongside them and it really makes me so happy to know that someone else is enjoying it to. Reading is an incredible skill and I love that you have a fully stacked bookcase in the little ones room. It is so important to read to babies and preschoolers and really enjoyable too. Happy World Book Day and thank you again xx
    Kirsty recently posted…World Book Day 2014My Profile

  3. There is nothing better than losing yourself in a book, I did the same with my twins, books were always around, despite consoles, tv’s and laptops vying for attention and as teens they lost the love a little, they are coming back to it. My daghter reads avidly again. Son occasionally but the love is there and will be strong when he is older.
    Jo Bryan recently posted…Freebie Friday 7th MarchMy Profile

  4. Great post and I totally agree. My kids love reading and always have done. We started reading to them very young (your baby pics are great btw) and always have books in the house, and of course they see us reading too. Books are so fantastic, brilliant for the imagination and creative. And so portable!

  5. I love reading, and hope to pass on that love to all of mine. The bigger two tend to read by themselves these days, tho the ten year old does still have a chapter read to him at bedtime. The toddler loves books, and being my third we have an awful lot to choose from!
    Sonya Cisco recently posted…Top 5 Inspirational WomenMy Profile

  6. That link with tips on what not to say was very helpful. I’m guilty of a couple of things, like interrupting to correct a mistake. I have got a lot better than I was though…I’m on child number 3 now and I try really hard not to interrupt! She has been the one who has found reading the easiest. Her sister (2 years older) gets annoyed because Ella corrects her when she’s reading or offers up the word before Kaycee has chance to work it out.
    I’m happy to say though that all three are avid readers and have tons of books in their bedrooms. They still like to get more from the library whenever they get chance!
    Shell Louise recently posted…Photo challenge and my 1000th post!My Profile


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