How To Get Your Student Interested In Reading For Pleasure

June 27, 2019

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Sarah: There are several questions you should ask your student. What does she like to do for fun? How does she learn best… dancing/moving, listening to music, walking to problem-solve, sitting, reading quietly, listening to lectures, or using hands-on activities, etc.?

There are age-appropriate activities for each walk of life (toddler, children, teen-ager, young-adult, and adults including seniors) that pique interests. What is she enthusiastic about? What are her interests? Does she like to cook or bake, sew or design clothes, crochet or knit, Zumba or spinning, lift weights, dieting and exercise, draw, paint or decoupage, visit museums, cathedrals or amusement parks, computer games, playing cards, or cleaning house? Is she employed or looking for employment? Is she interested in being promoted to the next level at work?

The library has pictorial books that have colorful pictures that outline the steps for many activities, like: cooking, baking, crocheting and sewing clothes. Ask a librarian for help to find them, or search by “tutorial”. Is she active in church activities? Does she play an instrument? What is her favorite movie or television show, and has she read the biographies of the actors? The library has books written like screen-plays that follow the storyline of many of the latest movies, too.

If she could be whatever or do whatever she has always wanted to do… what would that be? Would she be an author, dancer, athlete, doctor, attorney, nurse, teacher, riverboat pilot, airplane pilot, cruise ship captain, 18-wheeler truck driver, movie star, missionary, auto-mechanic, software or computer engineer, or President of the United States of America? Would she invent the next best product to go viral on the internet or television? Would she be a television reporter, anchor person, game-show host, or a radio broadcaster? Would she start her own childcare business or some other business? Would she travel all around the world? Would she become a pastor or an accountant?

Find her interests then incorporate reading activities into her daily life so that you can discuss them as part of your lessons. There are books, CDs, DVDs, e-books and Play-away Systems that can be borrowed from the public library or other libraries in Anne Arundel County that can satisfy all these interests, and more!

She can follow in the book as she listens to it being read on an i-pod, or computer screen. The News-in-Levels website,, also has news articles with matching transcripts that adds more descriptive vocabulary in longer sentences in levels 1, 2, and 3. (I also like using the YouTube website to find out how to do everything. Someone has done whatever you are looking for, and they have shared their results on YouTube. YouTube has great music, and video stories, tests, job descriptions, and teachers!).

Ask your public librarians for old magazines they are about to discard to get interesting articles and pictures. (I used to love the old Readers’ Digests humor and daily word sections. Some of the jokes were hilarious!) Suggest that your student keep a book, magazine or magazine clipping in every part of the house (including the bathroom and her purse) for easy access to reading material (and read and change them each week). (We have articles displayed on our refrigerator door!).

Does she have a Smart phone on which she can play games and view the internet? Has she tried reading articles on her phone? Does she use a cell-phone or a computer, constantly? This is the age of the Digital Generation, a generation that wants to get to things quickly by using electronic devices. Does she have an e-book reader, Kindle or Nook? Many of those devices have an Audio setting to hear the book being read as you follow the story on-screen.

Sooooooooooooooo…. What does she like to do AND what is her learning style?

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