Put the Smackdown on Illiteracy - #WWEmoms

Today a reader, tomorrow a leader.
— Margaret Fuller
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Did you know?

*  Reading frequency declines after age 8 – and boys are more likely to be low frequency readers than girls.

*  Children learn an average of 4,000 to 12,000 new words each year as a result of book reading.

*  There is an estimated 774 million illiterate adults in the world.

It can be exhausting to battle a child who doesn't like to read.  So what can you do to encourage reading?  Here are some ideas I tried.

*Let them read about what they're interested in.  We went from Thomas the Train, to Ben10, to Legos and Captain Underpants.  It didn't matter to me as long as he was reading.

*Impose a quiet time.  (self-imposed Mommy/Daddy time out) Thirty minutes in your room.    No TV, no music, no electronics.  When I walked back in the room I would always find him reading a book or magazine.

* Let them choose.  Most schools have book fairs or utilize Scholastic book ordering. If they choose it, they may be more apt to read it.

* Reading challenges (local, regional or national). 

A reading challenge I recently learned about was the WWE 2014 WrestleMania Reading Challenge.  The WWE has a long-standing commitment to literacy initiatives through various partnerships (Pearson Foundation, Penguin, We Give Books, YALSA).  The WrestleMania Reading Challenge provides children aged 4-18 a unique opportunity to read books both online and in libraries.

Children between ages 4 and 12 can select a WWE Superstar Reading Buddy and read digital books to participate, while teens ages 13 to 18 can select a WWE Superstar Pen Pal, read a book and write an essay.  The Grand Prize Winner receives a visit to their school from a WWE Superstar while the First Prize winners get a trip to WrestleMania 30!  Pretty awesome!  

Click here to join the WWE WrestleMania Reading Challenge.

Click here for official rules.

Click here to take action and join the initiative.

Other reading resources to check out:

Scholastic

Raz Kids

The Children's Reading Foundation

Disclosure: I am an active participant in the #WWEmoms campaign through Online Mom Media.  All opinions are my own.