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Encouraging Reading
Why reading is important

Reading raises your child's confidence and improves their writing and comprehension skills.

By reading more widely, your child will increase their awareness of other situations and cultures and improve their understanding of people around them.

Reading will also help your child to develop their personality and social and communication skills.

Reading with your children

One of the most pleasurable things can be reading with your children.

If they are reluctant to read independently, take it in turns to read a small section of the story and make sure that they understand the meanings of any new words.

If you are short of time, you could read to your children while they are in the bath or ask an older brother or sister to read a bedtime story to younger children if you work late.

If your children spend time with another parent or with their grandparents at the weekend, ask the other adult(s) to spend 15 minutes every day reading with them so that their interest is maintained.

You can also keep the momentum going by encouraging your children to follow a book award or reading scheme during the holidays.

Listening with your children

Many children's books are available on CDs. You can listen with your children either at home or in the car on your way to school or even on your way back from the shops.

Audio books can be fun for both of you. You and your children can follow the story together and you can give your voice a well earned break!

Keeping your children interested...

Many bookshops organise storytime events at weekends, hold theme days for children and have book-signing events at which children can meet their favourite authors.

Make time to visit your local library, which may run a fun reading challenge during the holidays.

As well as keeping your children busy, they can take part in the library challenge with their friends and develop their reading skills.
0-4: Where's That Monkey? by Dan Crisp

Where is that monkey? Follow the clues, peek through the holes and look for the monkey as he hides in the jungle.

5-6: The Butterfly Lion by Michael Morpurgo

When Bertie is sent from Africa to England, the lion cub that he rescued is sold to a circus. Bertie swears they will see one another again but it is the butterfly lion who ensures that their friendship lasts.

7-8: Give Peas a Chance by Morris Gleitzman

Give fun a chance! Save the world with a plate of vegetables, rescue your family with a tomato, send your dad into a panic with a tractor, upset your auntie with ten kilos of chocolate and lots more...

9-10: Death's Shadow by Darren Shan

After centuries of imprisonment, Bec is even more powerful but the demons no longer stand alone - something else has crawled out of the darkness and Lord Loss is no longer the greatest threat!

11-13: The Dragonfly Pool by Eva Ibbotson

Delderton Hall is more unusual than Tally imagined and now she is organizing an exciting trip to Bergania. Prince Karil escapes to the dragonfly pool and meets a girl who promises adventure...

14-16: The Stuff of Nightmares by Malorie Blackman

Kyle has always been afraid of dying and on a school trip, he has no idea how close to Death he is going to come...

17 and over: The Pirate's Daughter by Margaret Cezair-Thompson

In 1946, Errol Flynn washes up on Jamaica in his storm-wrecked yacht. Ida Joseph bears him a daughter, May, who will meet her father only once.
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