Too much television takes time away from reading, so don’t make it so easy for your kids to watch TV.

So, don’t have a television in the kitchen, or where it can be seen from the kitchen.

Put a bookcase or book bin in the kitchen. Keep it filled with comic books, magazines, and other easy-to-read materials.

Now make and enforce a rule that all snacks must be eaten in the kitchen. A child can read a short article while waiting on the microwave to finish or check out another interesting piece of reading while eating a bowl of cereal.

Teens’ reading skills get rusty, not because they can’t read, but that they don’t read. If it takes longer to read something, they avoid it even more.

Start small. Find a single article that your teen can finish in less than 15 minutes.

Match your teen’s interest. A sports fan may enjoy a sports magazine or the biography of a favorite athlete. A horse lover can find books from fantasies to mysteries to science fiction.

Think funny. Humor books can even the most reluctant reader see that there is a payoff to reading.

Finally, take your child to the local library and let them experience and sample the buffet of reading options available. Bon appétit.

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