Updated: Sep 11
It’s no secret that you should start reading with your child at home from an early age. The more your child is exposed to reading and books (or magazines or whatever reading material), the more likely your child will come to love reading.
One way that you can foster your child’s love of reading at home and help them get their hands on books is to create the perfect home reading environment for your child. This can look like many things depending on your home. However, a designated reading area is a place where your child can be exposed to books and feel safe and comfortable reading and relaxing with a book.
Where to Put Your Home Reading Environment
When it comes to deciding where to put your home reading environment, it is really going to depend on the amount of space you have in your home. Isn’t it every bibliophile’s dream to have an in-home library? And if you do, that is obviously the perfect place for your home reading environment. But, if you’re like me, you don’t have a library in your home. So where do you put your reading area for your child?
The best place for a home reading environment is somewhere quiet where your child can focus when they are reading. It’s also a good idea to put your reading area in a place where your child likes to be. So if your child loves the living room, the living room is a good place. If your child doesn’t like the basement, then it isn’t ideal for your home reading environment. Try to put your home reading environment in a central location in the home where your child visits often and that can be made comfy.
Other things you want to consider when finding the perfect place for your home reading environment is the lighting. While natural light does best, good access to electrical outlets is okay as well for lamps. Many people like to put their reading area near a window or in a windowsill.
What to Put in Your Reading Area
The best thing to put in your reading area? Books, books, books!
Other things you include in your home reading environment are going to again depend on the amount of space you have and the other things you have in your home (or what you are willing to buy). Some great items to put in your reading area include a rug to make the area more welcoming and colorful, bookshelves to hold the books and make the reading area more organized, a lamp to add more light if needed. You will also want some items to make the reading area more comfortable. Think about including a comfy place to sit (fun seating works really well here: bean bags, cushions, lounge chairs, etc.), pillows, and stuffed animals.
When furnishing your home reading environment, really think about what your child needs to be successful when reading and needs to be comfortable and feel like the reading area is a fun and exciting place to spend their time.
Ways to Make Your Reading Area More Comfortable
There are many things you can put in your reading area to make it more comfortable for your kids. First of all, include some cozy seating for your child: a bean bag chair or lounge chair is perfect for this. If you don’t have the space for that (or the supplies), adding some pillows and cushions on the floor is another great way to make the reading area more comfortable. Some people will even put up a tent or fort and put pillows and blankets inside for their child to read on.
Some people worry that a reading area that is too comfy is a bad thing. They think it means kids will sleep or get too cozy they won’t read. That’s not necessarily true. Kids are more likely to frequent the reading area if it is welcoming and inviting. This means the more cozy it is, the more likely your child will want to spend time reading in it.
Here are some other things to consider when thinking about making your home reading environment comfortable for your child:
Make sure they can reach all the books and tools (or toys) you have available in the reading area.
Include some soft stuffed animals your child can cuddle with or read to.
Think about including a small snack basket or small refrigerator so your child can have snacks while reading.
Try not to put it in a high traffic area of the home so your child can avoid distractions.
How to Encourage Your Child to Use the Reading Area
While the best way to make sure your child wants to use their home reading environment is to make it comfy and exciting, there are some other things you can do as well to encourage your child to read more in the reading area.
First of all, you can sit in the reading area with your child. Joining your child in the reading area means that you are showing your child that you think reading and the reading area is important. Also, your child wants to spend time with you! Reading together in your reading area is a great way to spend time together. Your child will want to be in the reading area when you are not because they like reading with you.
Secondly, include things in the reading area your child likes. If your child has a favorite blanket, put that in their reading area. Include books your child likes to read or books about topics your child enjoys. This will make them more likely to sit down in the reading area and enjoy a book. Kids want to read about things they are interested in and things they like.
Lastly, have your child help you create the reading area. If they are part of making the home reading environment, they are going to be excited to use it. Letting them choose the things to put in the reading area and help decorate it will make them want to spend time in the reading area.
Creating the perfect home reading environment for your reader can be simple and fun! There are so many things you can do to make your home reading area more inviting for your child and ensure that your child will actually use it. Your child will be enjoying their reading area in no time!