Boys Reading for Fun? Can we achieve it?
When kids are fully engaged, you can feel it. As a teacher and parent, it is incredibly rewarding to see the signals connecting in their brain. When children enter learning – as in real learning not just completing a task – they can become lost in it. How can we get our kids engaged and reading for fun? Is it achievable?
The importance of strong literacy skills
In the classroom, reading is king; it is essential for academic success. Teachers, witnessing the gap between good and poor readers widening, may wonder what they or these children might be doing wrong. Parents, knowing that reading problems have consequences all across development including into adult life, question themselves, feeling alternately guilty and angry. But don’t despair – boys will read if you give them the right content.
Why we need to make it fun:
- Books are the vehicles through which kids learn to think bigger and ask better questions.
- Kids build empathy and resilience as their main characters overcome obstacles such as loneliness, illness, social problems.
- Students explore universal themes of survival, hope, triumph, tragedy – all through the pages of someone else’s story.
- Children and teenagers who read for pleasure on a daily or weekly basis score better on reading tests than infrequent readers.
Need help on engaging your son or students with literacy?
Literacy for Boys is the only online program in the world that is targeted specifically at boys and how they learn. We developed material that boys love – this is our secret to achieving outstanding literacy results. Worried that it’s too late for your teenager? Don’t be – our program caters for boys up to 15 years (& it’s been a huge hit in high schools this year!). We improve their comprehension, spelling, grammar and punctuation – all the literacy areas are covered!
- Encourage boys to read what they want. It may be better for them to read a 19th-century novel than a sports magazine, but reading the magazine is a lot better than reading nothing. And reading anything encourages the habit of reading.
- Boys may need more encouragement than girls to read. This can come from parents reading to them, from school libraries or book clubs, or from teachers. Some effective classroom practices include asking students what a text means, asking their opinion of it, and helping them relate it to their own lives.
- During school terms, children can play some video games – but only after homework, and not late at night. (we leave gaming until the weekend in our household)
- Be wary of punishing boys for bad grades or behaviour. It could simply “further alienate” them from school.
- Find learning methods that appeal to boys. The Australian state of Victoria does this with its “Boys, Blokes, Books & Bytes” programme, which, says the OECD, “involves adult men as positive role models and reading partners”.
“Literacy for Boys has totally engaged my son. The rewards built into the program keep him motivated and wanting to achieve more. Since he started using LFB we have noticed he is reading more and his spelling has improved.” (Tara)
“My child just loves this program. We have spent money on a lot of other programs but he will use them for a little while and then loses interest. Now he begs us to stay up an extra hour at night so he can complete one more topic and climb up the Leaderboard.” (Michelle)
“Thankyou! Luca has blown me away with his confidence and commitment to the program. The ladder is an amazing tool and from the moment we found it, he was determined to progress up that ladder. He is now bringing his confidence across to maths as well and we are just in such a lovely place with his schooling at the moment and the changes are credited to your program. Thank you so much Tanya!” (Joanne)
Check out our blogs for more ideas and tips.
Brought to you by Tanya Grambower