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Book Talk: Encourage Family Reading

Having a weekly family book talk is a great way to encourage your children to read and keep them interested in reading for life

If you’re like me, there is nothing more joyful than having real conversations with your littles.

There are lots of ways to accomplish that, from carving out special time to having family meals together without technology to implementing a family game night.  But have you ever considered family book talks?

Gathering together once a week to talk about what your kids are reading can spark some interesting, lively conversations.  Hearing the stories that intrigue your littles, their reactions to different events within their books, can give real insight into what they’re thinking and feeling.

Why we love book talk night

When the boys were younger, there was nothing funnier than hearing Littlest recount Greg’s latest adventures in the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series. He has a lively sense of humor and a talent for retelling the tales. Now he usually has a new zombie book to thrill us with, and I love listening to how he would handle himself if he were stuck in a zombie apocalypse.  His plans are grandiose, but it’s so cool to see the careful thought he puts into them.

From Middle, we usually hear what he’s learned about the Greek, Roman, or Egyptian pantheon from his latest fantasy series.  (Middle is enthralled with the idea of gods who take human form and get involved in human activities on a personal level.  Plus, he loves the action).  He saves the best parts to include in the video games he’s planning to create, so I get to hear what’s going on with his future business when he talks about the books he’s reading.

I tell them what’s going on in whatever book I’m reading (and it’s always YA or middle grade), which helps when I write a review for my lovely readers because it keeps things fresh in my mind.  My beautiful husband isn’t a book reader, but he shares articles he’s read in magazines and newspapers, adding a bit of current events to our fantasy world.

Having a weekly family book talk is a great way to encourage your children to read and keep them interested in reading for life

How to host a family book talk

Starting a family book talk night is as easy as starting a family game night.

Pick a night when there are no other activities to interfere and set aside an hour.  Make popcorn or some other healthy snack, gather in a comfortable room, and dive in.

Have each child share whatever he wishes about the book he’s currently reading.

Be sure to ask your kids intelligent questions about whatever they share and give encouraging feedback to keep them interested.  Ask them about the characters and setting, have them define the problem the main character has to solve, and find out what they would do if they were in the story.

Make sure you have something to share, too, whether it be fiction or nonfiction, books or articles.

Family book talks help keep your kids reading on their own.  Who wants to show up for such a fun hour with nothing to share?  Most importantly, it reminds your kids that they are the most important thing in your life.  That you love to spend time with them, hear what they have to say, and have fun with them.  And isn’t that what really matters?

Love wins,

KT

KT Brison
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KT Brison

KT Brison is a former children’s librarian and educator who gave all that up for the most important job in her life—homeschooling her boys.Though she loves the outdoors and rambling around her farm, she can usually be found with her nose in a book. Any book. As long as it has words.
KT Brison
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About KT Brison

KT Brison is a former children’s librarian and educator who gave all that up for the most important job in her life—homeschooling her boys. Though she loves the outdoors and rambling around her farm, she can usually be found with her nose in a book. Any book. As long as it has words.
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10 Comments

  1. Thank you also, for linking up on the Love to Learn hop. Pinned! I just love this idea so much
    L. E. Mastilock recently posted…Best Road Trip Books for KidsMy Profile

  2. What a fun idea. My middle son could never wait to share once a week (since he tends to read a book in just a day or two and can never wait to blurt out what he’s reading about). But I do love the idea of intentionally setting aside time to talk about what we’ve been reading.. Pinned.
    Mother of 3 recently posted…Blogging Through the Alphabet: Z is for ZestMy Profile

  3. What an awesome idea! Thanks for joining the What to Read hop. I’m featuring this post in the next hop this week. Once my kids are reading more on their own, I’m going to try our own family book night.

  4. Oh my goodness, your site looks SO GOOD!!! I’m so proud of you. And yes, we love to read together. It’s my favorite. Right now we’re reading the Left Behind Kids. I started reading The Hiding Place to my 2 oldest, but then realized it was too heavy for them, so I just gave them a synopsis, engraved in their brain how evil the days of WW2 were, and moved on to a children’s series.

    • Thanks, April. No, really, that means so much to me. We’ve been in the trenches together since the beginning, so your opinion carries a lot of weight. The Hiding Place–yeah, that’s a heavy one. But I’m going to keep it in mind when we study WWII later in the year, because if these boys can handle All Quiet on the Western Front… Talk about Heavy.

      Ha, I said trenches and then talked about a WWI book. Totally on accident. But it’s kinda funny.

  5. This is a fun idea! We have never set aside specific times like this to talk about the books we are reading, but we do have some lively discussions about them around the dinner table. They really do love to know we are interested in what they are doing/reading. Asking questions really is the key to building that bond.

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