Encouraging three-year-old to have more interest in stories

(11 Posts)
dogindisguise Thu 31-Oct-13 21:49:42

My son will be three in a few weeks and I'm worrying that he doesn't seem to have much interest in books and am wondering how to encourage him more.

When he was a bit younger he loved stories, but recently he seems more keen on just climbing on the furniture. If I start reading him a story he often loses interest and wanders off, so I only ever manage fairly short stories, if anything. I sometimes manage one when I'm getting him ready for bed or occasionally during the day. When we do manage a story, I often don't finish it because he's busy talking about the illustrations, but at least that means he's taking an interest in the story.

I have always loved reading and am told I spent a lot of time being read to as a small child, whereas DH is a much less avid reader. DH usually has to settle him at night, as I have to go off and feed his baby sister, and instead of having a story they watch YouTube clips of nursery rhymes.

greenhill Fri 01-Nov-13 07:37:23

Does your DS like particular characters such as Octonauts or Mike the Knight? Having a familiar character in a story could encourage him more. Being interested in the illustrations is great, I always used to point out the objects in the picture that related to the word on the page and then my DC would repeat the word back to me. It expanded their vocabulary and made the story more tangible to them.

Just have piles of stories in every room and pick one up to read together when he comes to help in the kitchen, if on the potty, or next to the sofa. Having a choice of books scattered everywhere means that your DS should start picking them up and bringing them to you. I always read to the oldest when feeding the youngest too.

My DC love YouTube clips too, try to get your DH to show ones of NumTums or Alphablocks for numbers and letters, that way your DS gets really familiar with letter shapes too.

dogindisguise Fri 01-Nov-13 19:30:15

Thanks greenhill. He mostly only watches Abney and Teal on TV and we have a couple of the A&T books. We have books in the playroom and his bedroom but I think I will move some to all the other rooms as well. Didn't have much luck with the Gruffalo this evening but will keep trying! He is quite interested in letters so may try more alphabet clips too.

babyfedleaning Fri 01-Nov-13 19:37:11

Do you take him to the library? Many do story sessions / rhyme time. Get your son to choose the books he wants from there too, rather than you choosing on his behalf. I would be getting DH to read to your son at bedtime rather than passively watching youtube. Also get DH to ask your son to choose the bedtime book and tell your DH what's happening in the pictures.

DeWe Fri 01-Nov-13 22:27:18

Ds at that age decidedly liked facts not fiction. I spent mny a long hour reading details I didn't know and wasn't particularly interested in, about the Red Arrows or similar.
Now he's 6yo he reads them himself, and comes and tells me the facts with great excitement.

greenhill Sat 02-Nov-13 07:55:43

YY DeWe I can manage to read "Bob builds a house" but my heart sinks if I'm offered any of the factual photo books that merely list parts of a tractor, a racing car or construction vehicles. Fortunately this was a short stage with my DD and she read early, but DS still loves having every part listed, though he knows them by heart. The factual stuff can be very dry to read, but it always stirs enthusiasm for books.

Periwinkle007 Sat 02-Nov-13 19:30:22

personally I would try to discourage you tube at bedtime. Just say that now he is getting older Santa (assuming you celebrate Christmas) likes to know children enjoy books at bedtime or something like that. It doesn't matter what the book is, fiction, non fiction, poetry etc but I do think it is important to get used to books and turning pages.

dogindisguise Sat 02-Nov-13 19:35:08

Non-fiction is a good idea. I wonder if there are any books on streetlights, waterwheels, fans or wind turbines - those are his main interests.
Thanks for all the advice. Now I need to tell DH to do at least one story!

Liveinthepresent Sat 02-Nov-13 19:35:34

How about trying to make something along these lines?

Story sack - www.literacytrust.org.uk/assets/0000/7685/Story_sack_guidance.pdf

SteamWisher Sat 02-Nov-13 19:37:26

Your DH sounds a bit lazy - clips of nursery rhymes at bedtime hmm! That's a habit to break - swap this for books instead.

BornToFolk Sat 02-Nov-13 19:43:34

Definitely try non-fiction. Also, what about novelty books, with puppets like Calm Down Boris, or noisy buttons to press? The noisy ones might not be great for bedtime but he might enjoy them at other times. Sticker books can be good too, or DS used to have Little Space Explorers with a character to pull out and put in on each page and he loved that. Or pop up books? Basically anything that he can interact with a bit more!

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