Encouraging Children to Read - Kumon

Encouraging Children to Read

Kumon’s founder, Toru Kumon, firmly believed that reading is a fundamental part of all education. Studies show that children who enjoy reading are more successful in school and life. Although many parents work hard to encourage their children to read, sometimes it can be a challenge.

Here are some suggestions to help develop your children’s passion for reading:

  • Focus on your children’s hobbies. Think about activities your children like to do, and have reading material about those subjects available. Children are more willing to read if they can select something that interests them.
  • Read the books your children are reading. This demonstrates what they’re reading is important to you. It offers a chance to talk about the book and can improve the lines of communication between parent and child.
  • Encourage all forms of reading. Even reading the instructions for a game or assembly directions for a model airplane are good opportunities to encourage reading.
  • Read closed captions. When watching a television show with your children, try turning off the sound and taking turns reading the captions. This can make reading fun and entertaining.
  • Keep reading material handy.  Always have something to read for your children when running errands or traveling. Reading can help ease boredom for your children when waiting in traffic or at the doctor’s office.
  • Suggest a book series. There are many series to consider, like: Curious George, Henry Reed and Lemony Snicket. These series and more are included in the Kumon Recommended Reading List. Once a child’s interest is discovered, another similar book series or author can usually be found.
  • Expand on your children’s reading experiences. If they read about dinosaurs, visit a local museum. If they see a movie based on a book, suggest they read the book and compare the two.


Children are motivated to read when they find the experience to be enjoyable. Once this happens, your children will have fun while learning, and develop a true love for reading.