While growing up, I recall listening to my teachers lament about how youngsters my age detested reading. Some of our teachers even went further to recount stories of how much they read as kids and how it had shaped them into the adults they have become.
Now as a grown-up, I cannot help but shake my head as I watch this same trend go extinct right in my face. I find out that kids these days would do anything else but read.
Truthfully in our present day, a lot has changed. An average child has to deal with distractions from the internet and television. Even as a grownup, I find myself sometimes lost in this world of information, adverts, and social media, how much more the Gen Zers?
Urgent solutions are needed as blame games would not avail much. One laudable solution I have discovered is imitation. Children are great imitators so we must consciously give them great things to imitate. They often like to repeat what they have seen the special people in their lives do. A friend of mine once narrated how she developed the habit of always praying right before she entered her home. She was stunned to catch a glimpse of her five-year-old doing the same thing one day after stepping out with her dad.
It will be extremely difficult, if not impossible to get our children to become expert readers if all we do in front of them is stay glued to our phones. I know! The parental responsibility is getting more tasking and complicated.
Here’s what I think can be a way out. How about finding a time whenever we are relaxed to read at least a chapter of a book? If you don’t have any, there’s no better time to begin buying than now. Books have no expiry dates and are worth every dime.
Also, reading does not have to be boring. At home, you can spice it up by creating a reading corner. You can tell everyone about your special reading time and your expectations for that moment. This can be an hour in a week or more. As time goes by, you can find out books that match your child’s interest and invest in buying. You can share your reading time with your children and listen to them narrate the lessons or stories. You’d be surprised to see how giddy they’d be ’cause every child wants to be listened to.
I guarantee you that reading is a weapon of change. How about fortifying our kids with these harmless weapons?
And the next time you are about to complain or scold your kids, inquire of yourself if you’ve been an excellent role model!