What are you reading right now?
As a reprieve, a lot of parents dive into fiction, fantasy, mystery or romance. Some choose creative nonfiction, biographies or educational pieces on parenting, health, life. Whatever is at your nightstand, are you talking about these books with your children?
As for the child, they are probably reading or have something new read to them every day as well. Maybe there is a special book they return to each night, asking you to read just once more.
Just like a lot of us, children can’t seem to get enough of enchanting books. Are you talking about them enough?
It’s a great time of year to begin a book club. Maybe you participate in one with fellow adult readers, and good for you if you take that time for yourself, but consider starting one with your family, too!
A family book club is a wonderful opportunity to share the love of reading with your children. There is a discovery within books that brings us to life, and if reading makes us feel so free as an adult, imagine that joy as a child!
Starting a book club creates an intentional conversation with your child about why they like the books they do. It is time set aside to not talk about anything else but a love for books and characters and authors and imagination.
And it’s just really fun.
Before you begin a family book club, decide on a time and place. How often will you meet? And where will you host your book club? Perhaps it’s best to just set up blankets and pillows on the living room floor, or maybe you’d prefer snacks and tea at the kitchen table, or even your family’s favorite restaurant.
Either way, choosing and maintaining a special time and location for book club not only builds anticipation, but it validates the importance of family discussion.
Each time you gather for book club, allow one family member to choose a book of choice. Depending on the ages of your children, you can then either read the book as a family, or you can allow for private reading before joining to discuss the book of choice.
Here are some topics of discussion to consider:
- Why do you think the author chose this title? How would you title the book?
- What did you like most about this book, and why?
- Is there a new or interesting word you learned in this book that you want to talk about?
- Who was your favorite character, and why?
- Is there a favorite page or entry you’d like to read to us?
Throughout the discussion, allow your child to lead the conversation. To encourage this leadership, ask your child, “What other thoughts or questions do you have for us?” “Is there anything else you’d like to add?”
However you’d like the book club to go, be sure to share your feelings, ideas and thoughts openly. This is an opportunity for your child to truly listen to other people’s opinions and learn from one another. You also are offering them a safe space to be vulnerable and brave as they share their opinions, and they will appreciate you for this.
Most importantly, a book club creates within your family a strong and meaningful bond, all through the love of books. Begin a book club with your family this week, and let us know how it goes!
About the Author
Angela Tewalt is a writer, storyteller and mother to two boys. She shares parenting stories and inspiration in Guidepost Parent.
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