Monkey See, Monkey Do

image credit: Paul Hamilton, Flickr

image credit: Paul Hamilton, Flickr

The more I read about how to raise happy and healthy children, the more I learn that it’s all about being a role model. You can tell them over and over again to be a certain way, but what they’re really going to do is learn by watching you.

In celebration of March is Reading Month, be a reading role model for your children. If we want them to read, let them see us reading!

You might be thinking, “I haven’t read since my child was born! Where do I begin?” Start getting ideas on what to read either on Shelfari or Goodreads. Here’s what I’ve read on Shelfari. I love getting suggestions from other readers and I like references to what I’ve read in the past.

Here are some helpful tips on becoming a reading role model:

  1. Set your alarm and wake up a little early to read with a cup of coffee.
  2. Keep your books next to your bed and wind down in the evening by reading.
  3. Sit next to your child during quiet time (normally for older children who have outgrown naps) and read your book while they read or browse their own. Remember the importance of reading to your child as well, but sitting down together for quiet time is special.
  4. Ask your partner to have an hour to yourself on the weekends. Maybe you escape to a quiet room in your house and read. I personally like to bring my book to read while I get a pedicure!
  5. Keep your book handy. You may have to wait a good 30 minutes at a doctor appointment. With today’s technology, you can read your book on your phone while waiting.
  6. Take your book with you in the car so when you arrive early to pick up your child from school, your time waiting in the car can be spent reading.
  7. A lot of people complain they don’t have time to read. Think about what you’re doing with your time in the evenings after the kids are in bed. If you’re tuning into reality show after reality show, then you do have time to read but are choosing to use your time in a different way. I was hooked on Lifetime movies for a few months and I was going to bed feeling anxious because I knew how much more I enjoyed reading than watching reruns of really bad movies!

Make the time to read!

– Maria Dismondy, mother of two, reading specialist, fitness instructor and bestselling children’s author living in Southeast Michigan

1 Response to “Monkey See, Monkey Do”

  1. 1 Joyce Poggi Hager March 13, 2014 at 8:02 am

    When I’m not reading, I still carry a book from bedroom to kitchen, from kitchen to car. I just always want one near me. Still, my children don’t read as much as I’d hope they would. Maybe later in life they’ll make time for it.

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