As Darkness Falls Curl Up with a Good Book

The clocks have changed. It’s getting dark by 5:00. Between the earlier nightfall and the cooler weather, families can find themselves home earlier, and their evening routines a bit roomier.

If you do not read with your kids, now’s a great time to start.

Find a cozy spot where you can snuggle together.

Consider establishing some kind of ritual. My daughter loves candles—if you’re like her, maybe you can have a special scented reading candle you light only for this time. Other rituals can involve sipping at a cup of herbal tea or hot cocoa, wearing your fuzzy slippers, or cuddling under your favorite blankets.

If your child is young, read to her. If your child is capable of reading himself, choose a book and take turns reading it to each other. Or read side by side.

Your first objective? To simply enjoy the story and the time together. This will build a positive association in your child’s mind with reading and books, which will work to her benefit in all academic pursuits.

When you’re done? Talk to each other. Talk about what you’ve read (even if you and an older child were reading different books). Discuss the characters, their dilemmas, and their decisions. Consider how they mesh with your family’s values. Share ways your reading is broadening your worlds. Have fun!

Read with your child, even if he’s taller than you!