I Love Reading | 3 Tips for Reluctant Readers

Hello everyone! How are you? With the closure of school to mark the end of Term 1, I hope you are all enjoying this short break! Some of you will probably relish the opportunity to wake up a little later and also have the freedom to do what you want for a week 🙂 I usually advise my students to play hard AND also work hard during this holiday. That is because once school reopens for Term 2, it won’t be long till they will have to sit for the Semestral Examination.

Unfortunately, my advice will elicit some groans from the class as I think that’s probably the last thing students want to hear at the start of their holidays! Nonetheless, I tell them that working hard doesn’t have to be sitting down and doing assessment books. Catching up on some reading counts too!

But… what if your child is completely resistant to reading? We all know how important reading is for learners of English. How can we help these reluctant readers to pick up reading and more importantly, finish that book? Here are 3 tips that I have prepared for you today!


1. Select reading materials which are a right fit for your child

Individual interest and pitching are two things to consider when it comes to selecting the right reading materials for your child. Start off by knowing what genre(s) your child likes and pull engaging books from such area(s). The books chosen should also be pitched at a level well-suited to your child’s ability in the language. Check out our recommendations here! It is important that you try not to dictate what your child should read as it might stifle their interest or put them off reading completely.

Additionally, it is important to recognise that reading is not confined to sitting down with a chapter book, and reading non-fiction is just as important these days. If your child is not particularly keen on books, perhaps try alternative sources. Notice that your child likes to read about wildlife or factual articles relating to Science? Take advantage of it and look for articles that talk about the subject matter. The Internet has a myriad of free news sources which you can make use of!

2. Start reading with your child

Once your child has reached a certain age (say upper Primary), do you find yourself simply just picking out books for him/her and then asking him/her to read them. Yet sometimes, for children, especially reluctant readers, the inertia is simply too great.

What I’ve come to realise is that as adults, we can help these children build momentum for their reading. Once a child’s interest is piqued, they will be keen to continue the book on their own, even without much prompting.

If you start reading with your child, get him/her hooked on the storyline. You could find interesting facts about the book to share with them (for example, books which have been made into movies), show them book trailers (visual learners may enjoy this!) or if you have read the book yourself, share snippets of it that will attract your child! Once you’ve sparked their interest, they will probably be inclined to go through the rest of it alone. After all, nobody likes being left hanging, do they?

3. Help your child pace his/her reading

Some children don’t read not because they lack interest but rather, they do not know how to fit it into their lives. As school work becomes more rigorous, adding extra classes and CCA on top of it will mean that they do not have much free time left. Using whatever limited free time they have left to read may be a less attractive option compared to play.

One thing you can do is to tell your child that even reading a little every day is better than none. One idea which I liked was the use of a pacing bookmark to show the child that if he/she does a bit of reading everyday, it will eventually accumulate and there will still be the consequent payoff!


Adapted from: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Reading-Bookmarks-DURING-Reading-Tools-for-Secondary-ELA-2340683

These pacing bookmarks are also especially useful in helping the child stay on track. For example, instead of setting the goal of reading one book each month, the pacing bookmark will allow the child to set more specific and attainable goals. For some children, the idea of conquering a few pages at once will seem less daunting than an entire book. Moreover, it can also serve as a good confidence booster when he/she gets through each page goal set.

So there you have it! I hope you find the above useful. Cultivating the interest to read may take some time but with some patience and encouragement, I believe that we can help these children grow to love it!


Group 48 1
Ms. Siow

Ms Delia Siow is a dedicated teacher who is committed to providing an environment where a child can grow and thrive. She enjoys developing strategies to help students learn in a fun and meaningful way. Through her lessons, she hopes to help students lay a sound foundation in grammar and gain independence in their work. She strongly believes that good grammar is essential in students to gain proficiency in the language and finds joy in watching the bricks of their strong grammar foundation take form.

Have something to share? Drop us a comment below!

Leave a Reply


Other related posts

Creative Writing | 3 Easy Steps to Write Your Own Haiku!
Verbs: More than Just Action Words! | Part 3: Changes in Verb Forms
Ketchup on English! – is, are, was and were!
Audience In Visual Text | Visual Text Comprehension
Exploring Points of View (POV) in Composition Writing
Metaphors For? | Part II – Implied Metaphors
10 Beautiful Vivid Verbs to Boost Your Writing and Oral! | Primary School English
Metaphors For? | Part I – An Introduction to Metaphors
3 Family-Friendly Shows on Netflix (Educational & Entertaining)!
Verbs: More than Just Action Words! | Part 2: Tenses
2021 Father’s Day Contest Winners
Verbs: More than Just Action Words! | Part 1: Subject-Verb Agreement
10 Beautiful Words You Can Use in Narrative / Descriptive Writing | Secondary School
Ways To Create A Well-Rounded Character | Creative Writing
Understanding Purpose-Related Questions in Visual Text Comprehension
How Playing Video Games Can Improve Our English (With Practical Tips for Parents!)
Primary School Composition | Onomatopoeia – What’s That?
2021 Mother’s Day Contest Winners + Our Founder’s Journey (Mother’s Day Special)!
Composition Revision: Using Your 5 Senses in Your Writing
How to Create A Dynamic Piece of Writing Using Idioms
Ketchup on English! – Subject-Verb Agreement
Punctuation Marks: Colon Vs. Semicolon
4 steps to Create Suspense
That Simile Though 2 | Using Stronger Similes
Creating a Dilemma in a Story
PSLE ORAL | Compiled Prelim 2021 Oral Topics + Questions!
If you’re looking at getting recent PSLE Prelim Oral topics and practice questions, this will be an excellent resource for you!
5 Steps to Convert a Newspaper Article into a Cloze Passage
I would like to share with you 5 steps on how authentic articles can be transformed into cloze passages easily. Read on here!
PSLE English | Oral Conversation: Free SG50 Sample Practice + Model Answers
In this blogpost we will be touching on the oral stimulus-based conversation topic of National Day and SG50! Read on here!
PSLE English | Oral Conversation: Filling your Story with Details Easily + Free Revision Cards
By simply using the 5W1H, your children will be able to lengthen their stories (hence, the conversation!). Read on here!
PSLE English | Situational Writing: Q&A + Formal vs Informal Writing Comparison Chart
To aid you in your situational writing revision, here is a comparison chart that shows the differences between formal and informal writing!
PSLE English Tips | Oral: Stimulus-Based Conversation Checklist
To help my children handle the Stimulus-Based Conversation examination, here are some instructions again about using the checklist!
A Little Encouragement | DIY Motivational Bookmark (Easy to personalise too!)
A bookmark with a quote to motivate is also a chance for them to see the power of words and how words can mean more than what they seem.
Situational Writing: Step-by-Step Guide + Free Revision Card
I believe a walkthrough on the process of doing situational writing is in order. Here are the requirements for content and language!
I Love Reading | 5 Ways to Motivate Reluctant Readers
One of the most important ingredients necessary for a child or anyone learning English is the habit of reading. Get motivated to read now!
PSLE English | Printable Ultimate Grammar & Synthesis Summary
Today, we are sharing two lists of essentials in our Ultimate Grammar and Synthesis Summary Printable. Download them free here!
How Well Do You Know Your Past Participles?
While we are familiar with the past, present and future tenses, the little less known but equally important tense is the past participles.
Primary Composition Writing | Starting Sentences with Introductory Clauses
Today, we'll be revising the use of sentence starters to help you create variety in your sentence structures. Read on here!
The Sentence Train | Lower Primary English
Today, we are going to learn what makes up a sentence. It will come in handy when you do the word order activity in school! Read on here!
PSLE English Tips | Oral: Reading Checklist
This Oral Reading Checklist can be used by children when they practise reading on their own. Download it now!
Language of COVID | 10 Words Added to the Dictionary
Using Personification to Show, Not Tell!
Expressing Character Feelings Too! | Using Show-Not-Tell (Part 2)
How to Choose a Book to Read: 8 Ways
How to Dress Up A Boring Paragraph | Creative Writing
Ketchup on English! – Halloween Special: Prepositions of Time!
Ketchup on English! – Verbs Are Not Just Action Words!
Expressing Character Feelings | Using Show-Not-Tell
Which Picture Should I Use? | Choosing the Best Picture to Use for Composition!
Oral: Reading Passage | Long Vowels – Have You Been Reading Your Vowels Correctly?

Like what you are reading?

Subscribe now to receive news and tips hot off the press!

shape icon 06
shape icon 05