Read Aloud as a Family

Read Aloud as a Family

Be your own book club!

If you seem to be having trouble establishing your own book club, why not simply start one as a family? Even if there are only two of you, it will still yield some fun times and perhaps even the most special memories of your life. Some of my favorite memories as a child are of my parents reading to me, as well as me reading to my younger sisters—and now we are forging new ones as my husband and I take turns reading aloud with our daughter.

It all started last spring when he was laid off and we started reading The Hunger Games together. We made it through The Hunger Games, its sequel Catching Fire, and the final installment of the series, Mockingjay. Though we’d tried to read books together before in our relationship, we’d never succeeded like this before—and since my husband is not a big reader (he NEVER reads, actually) this was a huge deal to us both. We could finally discuss the books I loved so dearly—and when we saw the film together, we could discuss its differences as well!

Now we are reading Brandon Mull’s Fablehaven series aloud, and our daughter loves it so much that if we forget a night she reminds us. When we read the previous trilogy together, I read all of the chapters aloud; however, we are taking turns this time in order to show that we both enjoy reading and to provide a good example. I think my husband actually enjoys it, too.

To create a family book club, you can all choose a book that’s age-appropriate for the youngest member while still being interesting to the oldest one. You can also take turns reading as we are by swapping chapters, or if it’s a picture book, having a new reader on each reading night. You may want to establish a special night once per week, or simply read every night before bedtime. Many families may opt to read an entire chapter before bed each night as a calm closing to the day.

Be sure to discuss the book together as well—not just in an academic way, but by discussing each other’s likes and dislikes, too. You’ll get to know one another better as a family while you develop a love of literature for a lifetime. You might even get some good ideas for future Christmas gifts in a genre!