Encourage Reading with Book Talks

For us parents, there is nothing more joyful than having real conversations with our littles.  There are lots of ways to accomplish that, from carving out special time to ensuring family meals together sans TV to implementing a family game night.  But have you ever considered family book talks?

If you’re a reading family, or even if you’re not, 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.

For our family, there is 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. 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!)  I tell them what’s going on in whatever book I’m reading, which helps when I write a review 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, helping to add a bit of current events to our fantasy world.

He’s our anchor. In so many ways.

Starting a family book talk night is as easy as starting a family game night.  Pick a night when there are no activities to interfere and set aside an hour.  Make popcorn or some other healthy snack, gather in a comfortable room, and dive in.  Be sure to ask your kids intelligent questions about whatever they share and give encouraging feedback to keep them interested.  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?

If you have family book talks or are just interested in having them, let me know your thoughts.  How do you/would you go about them?  Would you pick a book for everyone to read or follow our lead and just talk about whatever each person chooses?  I would love to hear your creative ideas.

Love wins,



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