Tips to Make Reading Inclusive and Accessible to All Children

Engage, Inform, Inspire

Whether you are a teacher in a school, a librarian, a parent, or somebody who works with children, you will be aware of the amazing power reading has and the benefits it can bring to all children. 

However, for some children reading can be that little bit more difficult for a variety of reasons, ranging from not having easy access to reading material to challenges due to print disabilities or struggling to find reading material that engages and excites them. It is important that in the classroom, or in the home, or in any care setting where a child spends a lot of time, there are opportunities for them to have access to reading and reading material, no matter what their reading ability or interest. 

So, how can reading be made more accessible and inclusive? Here are a few of our top tips:

  1. Have a variety of reading material available. Depending on the age of the child/children they will have interests in different things. Some may love fiction; others may prefer to read non-fiction and there will be those who enjoy a mixture of both. Whatever their preference is, it isn’t wrong. What children read should be their choice. And remember reading goes beyond books – magazines and comics are also great sources of reading material. 
  • Champion all kinds of reading material, as well as reading material for a variety of ages (age appropriate of course). Some children still prefer to read picture books when they are deemed to be ‘too old’ for picture books, but there’s nothing wrong with this if the child is enjoying the experience of reading. Many picture books are beautiful works of art comprising of both words and pictures. And let’s not forget that some children find novels daunting for a variety of reasons but will happily still read books with pictures. Then there are those children who are more advanced in their reading and want something new that will challenge them. It’s important to allow children to enjoy their reading material, whatever it is, and not to criticise their choice. 
  • Ensure that the reading material available allows the children to feel ‘seen’. That means making sure that the reading material available reflects children from a wide variety of backgrounds and cultures, and with a range of abilities and disabilities. 
  • If the appropriate reading material isn’t available, then make sure it is! This sounds like an expensive ask, but it doesn’t need to be. One of the best things anyone can do for a child is to get them a free library membership and, depending on where you live, libraries will also supply books to schools too. 
  • Ask children what they want to read and what interests them. If they express a dislike of reading, then try to find out what it was about their previous reading experiences that has put them off and see if there’s a way to encourage them. 
  • Make sure they see you reading! If children can see you read, then they are more likely to see reading as accessible and something that is available to them.

Here at News Mag Media and Audio Mag Media we are all about inclusivity and accessibility – making reading inclusive and accessible to all children was a big driving force behind the creation of The Fact Factory. We want all children to experience the joy there is to be had in reading, and for that to happen children need to feel that reading includes them.

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