There are countless benefits to encouraging young children to read: not only does it boost their vocabulary and general knowledge, but it also helps them unleash their imagination, develop their sense of empathy, and prepares them to stay focused in school. However, it can be hard to inspire children to read when they would rather be playing outside or watching their favorite TV shows instead.
One way to encourage young children and toddlers to read more by themselves is to build a reading nook in which they can be comfortable and will actually want to spend some time reading. If you have perused through Pinterest and other websites, building a reading nook can feel a little intimidating and requiring a sophisticated setup. It doesn’t need to be this way! Here are our best tips to build your own DIY reading nook on a budget!
Pick the perfect spot.
The best place for a DIY reading nook is a place that is easily accessible so it can be a constant reminder to your children that they could be making themselves comfortable with their favorite characters right now.
A simple corner in a playroom, family room or living room can do the trick, but a reading nook is also a great way to bring a new life to an underutilized place in your house, like an unused closet or an awkward space like an area under the stairs.
You can easily make it more private it by adding a canopy or some sheer curtains, or you can go all out and set up a tent so your child. It will keep your little one away from distractions so that they can focus on their book instead.
Add the ideal lighting.
Whoever says reading, says good lighting. If you can set your reading nook next to a window, your child will be able to take advantage of natural daylight, which is why window benches and bay windows are so popular. If the light is too harsh at certain times of the day, add some sheer curtains.
However, you will still have to figure out some kind of apparatus for nighttime. Although string lights and Christmas lights can add a cozy and whimsical touch to your DIY reading nook while staying on budget, but you also need a source of light you can use for actual reading. If you cannot wire in an overhead light, install a clip-on reading light.
Make it comfortable
Inspire budding bookworms and reluctant readers alike by making their reading nook as cozy and comfortable as possible. Giant floor pillows, soft sheepskins, fluffy rugs, bean chairs, and more pillows look inviting and can be arranged whichever way your little reader will find convenient. You can even use a swinging chair or hammock for an additional whimsical touch if your space allows.
A soft throw blanket is inviting any time of day. Maybe a couple of friendly stuffed animals can live in the reading nook and make agreeable reading companions your little one can prop up with their own books.
Personalize the space using with their favorite characters, especially those that are issued from their most beloved books and fairytales. Although soft, calming colors like white, blue or light grey are good choices for reading nooks, you can personalize it with pops of your child’s favorite colors.
Add book storage
No reading nook is complete without books, from new discoveries to old choices. Make sure books are easily accessible and set up in a way that will inspire your child to reach out for new titles regularly. If you have too many books to realistically keep them in the reading nook, rotate them often so that your child is not tempted to read the same books over and over again and discovers new favorites that will expend his or her horizons.
While baskets are popular as they allow to store a lot of books, nothing beats a bookshelf that displays titles more clearly. This giraffe bookshelf will add a touch of whimsy while keeping your child’s books organized. You can also go the wall mounted route to free some floor space.
As inviting and cozy as your reading nook can be, make it a rule not to allow any of those pesky electronic distractions in the space: tablets and cellphones should stay out of the reading nook at all times!