Reading is a critical component of children’s academic - and future life - success. Studies show that kids learn to read and comprehend stories in a multitude of ways, both inside and outside of the classroom. Kids are inherently inquisitive about the world around them so, naturally, they embrace learning new things.
Below are 15 fun, creative ideas that organically weave reading, comprehension, and vocabulary into family time activities! They are great for all kids, including those who love reading and those who aren't yet fond of it.
In addition to involving you in your child’s education in a fun and effective way, these family time activities may also foster a deeper relationship with your child, creating lasting memories for years to come.
Here at R2S, we are all about reading, so we thought we would ask our new Executive Director some fun reading-specific questions to learn a little bit more about her.
What is your favorite children’s book?
My favorite children’s book that I read to my son, especially around Halloween, was “My Monster Mama Loves Me So”. Beyond the many books my son got throughout the year, every Christmas, I would get him a special one that I would inscribe, and we would read on Christmas Day. My favorite one is “The Gift of Nothing." It totally sums up our relationship and how we view gifts/giving. You should definitely read it.
Where is your favorite place to read?
I love reading before I go to bed. It’s a time to unwind and escape the day-to-day. I often fall asleep with my glasses on and a book on my chest.
What’s the last thing you read, book or otherwise?
I’ve just picked up (again) “The Historian” by Elizabeth Kostova. I love how she weaves time and space so fluidly and how the pieces all come together in the end. Her words are so descriptive that you can feel, see, taste every moment and place.
If you could have one author, dead or alive, over for dinner, who would it be? Why?
Madeleine L'Engle. I loved the Wrinkle in Time series and still have all the books, which I often reread as an adult. As a young girl, it was the first book I read that incorporated modern science and a strong, smart female character. It inspired me to imagine a world beyond my reality and piqued my interest in science. An interest that led me to two post-graduate degrees that incorporated both education and science.
Who inspired your love of reading?
My mom, most definitely. Her mom, my grandma Jewell, was a librarian, and books were readily available to her growing up. Ever since I can remember, we would read together every day. And while we didn’t have much growing up, we always had books. After all these years and over 15 moves back and forth across the country, I still have many of my childhood books….including “Drummer Hoff” and “The Giving Tree."
What’s your favorite book-to-movie adaptation?
It’s a toss-up. I’ve loved the adaptations of Dr. Seuss’s “The Lorax” and “The Grinch Who Stole Christmas”. I’ve watched those cartoon specials since I was young. More recently, I’d say the Harry Potter series. I love the books (have the full set in hardback) and have enjoyed the movies as well.
When is the last time you read to someone else?
My mother has late-stage Parkinson’s and is unable to read or really do much of anything for herself. I, and others, now read her the books she’s enjoyed since she was young. Mostly children’s books that she and I have collected over the years.
If you wrote an autobiography, what would it be titled?
"What’s Your Excuse?. . .What’s Your Inspiration?" I am thankful for my journey and all the people who have been and/or are a part of it. I’ve had many wonderful, magical experiences and, at the same time, some horrible ones as well. Storytelling has always been important to me, personally and professionally. I hope to share my story one day to bring humor, hope, and inspiration to others.
What is your favorite genre to read?
I enjoy children’s books and have a wonderful collection. I lean toward Mystery and Fiction, however, it usually depends on my mood or interest at the time.
What is one of your fondest memories of growing up in WNC?
Hiking and camping in the mountains. My love of nature and the outdoors was ignited in the Blue Ridge Mountains. My parents were hippies, and we would spend countless hours, days, and weeks exploring the creeks, mountains, and trails in this area.
Read more about the new Executive Director announcement in our press release - click here.
Read to Succeed Asheville/Buncombe (R2S) is a local, independent nonprofit on a mission to help close the