Many parents overlook the value of reading to their children, but studies show that teaching your children to read and spending time doing so with them can affect their later development in a multitude of ways. The question is how to get your children interested in reading and, once you have them hooked, how to keep them engaged. Thankfully, there are ways to connect reading with play that will get your kids to think of it as a fun activity rather than a chore or a homework assignment. Building learning and reading forts allow you to spend time your child as well as teach him or her about the joys of reading – which you can experience together.
According to studies such as the one conducted by the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, reading in early childhood corresponds to higher levels of brain activity later in life. To get your kids interested in reading, a reading fort helps in two ways: engaging them in activity, and designating a place in which they can improve their reading skills. When they build a reading fort, this establishes a purpose and gets them excited about the outcome, as well as bolsters their imagination when they imagine themselves to be in the castle or spaceship that they are reading about. And, having a set place where the two of you can sit and read together ensures that it will happen and your child will learn to look forward to learning how to read.
There is a great variety of fun forts to build, from castles to tunnels, which will excite your children’s imaginations! Pick something, if possible, that relates to the reading material. Alternatively, you simply need a fort with a good amount of space for both of you to sit. It can be transformed into a reading zone where you escape to imaginary places based on the books you read together.
Make sure that you have a frame for your fort, as well as the materials that you will use to fill it with. Have soft materials for the inside and colorful ones for exterior decoration! You can buy special fabrics or simply use ones from home. Fort Magic has some great frames that you can choose from, including a villa, a ship, and an airplane. Experiment together to create a unique fort made just for reading. Add seating and a spot where your favorite books are kept.
Visit Fort Magic’s website to ask questions about how to build a fort, purchase materials or simply get inspired with tons of ideas! It is the perfect start to a reading fort that will bring you and your children hours of learning and joy.
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