Boys reading

We all agree how important it is for our children to develop a love of books and reading, without which it would be much more difficult to access many areas of life. Boys sometimes struggle with this more than girls, this area of the website is designed to help your son/sons to learn to read and develop a life long love of reading.

We have put together a range of resources, tips and web links that are designed to help you promote reading at home.

Please make sure that you check out our web links section for a whole host of videos, websites and freebies that will help get you started.

Top tips for encouraging boys to read

Try these top tips from Gary Wilson, expert on raising boys’ achievement, to encourage independence in general and reading in particular – and loving both!

1. Praise

Boys need lots of praise. Often they see themselves as getting attention for all the wrong reasons. So, give your son lots of approval for all the right reasons! A good rule of thumb is to try to say three positive things to every negative.

  • When giving praise, try to be specific about what it is your son has done to earn the praise.

2. Talk

If you want to help your son to do better, it’s important to get him talking (and listening!) right from the start. You can help in several ways:

  • Show an interest in what your son is doing (even if the subject doesn’t interest you!) and ask questions about it.
  • Talk with him, rather than at him.
  • It’s important to be patient: listen with interest, keep the conversation going, ask questions and don’t leap in with an answer. Easier said than done!

3. Be independent

To help your son to be independent from an early age, you could encourage him to:

  • get himself dressed in the morning.
  • make a list of everything he needs for school that day.
  • make his own decisions about a few things in the week’s routine.

4. You can do it!

Boys often feel that mistakes equal failure. A boy’s response is sometimes to say that he ‘can’t do it’. To help your son feel that he can CAN do it, give him lots of encouragement when he does something well. It’s also important to remember that mistakes don’t equal failure; it’s just the way we learn.

5. Read, read, read

It’s really important to show boys that reading is an ‘ok’ thing for men to do. So, granddads, dads, brothers, uncles…. you need to get reading too! Reading together is important for boys of all ages as it helps them realise that it’s not only a skill for life, but also good fun too.

  • Read with expression
  • Talk about the characters, plot and pictures along the way.
  • Ask him to guess what might happen next.

6. Reading isn’t just about books!

Encourage your son to read when you are out and about together. Try reading labels, signs, posters, instructions… the list is endless. Words are everywhere, so read them.

Age Title Author
3-5 Pants Nick Sharratt
3-5 Bumpus, Jumpus, Dinosaur Rumpus Tony Mitton
3-5 Tom and the Island of Dinosaurs Ian Beck
3-5 Winnie the Pooh A.A. Milne
5-8 Dirty Bertie David Roberts
5-8 You Do! Kes Gray & Nick Sharratt
5-8 Cinderella’s Bum Nicholas Allan
5-8 The Queen’s Knickers Nicholas Allan
5-8 Dr Dog Babette Cole
5-8 The Giggler Treatment Roddy Doyle
5-8 Cool Michael Morpurgo
5-8 Horrid Henry Series Francesca Simon
5-8 Robin of Sherwood Michael Morpurgo
5-8 Diary of a Killer Cat Anne Fine
5-8 The Story of Little Mole Werner Holzwarth & Wolf Erlbruch
7-9 Vlad the Drac series Ann Jungman
7-9 Big Tom Jean Ure
7-9 War Boy Michael Foreman
7-9 Indian in the Cupbaord Lynne Reid Banks
8-10 Measle and Wrathment Ian Ogilvy
8-10 The Turbulent Term of Tyke Tyler Gene Kemp
8-11 Boys Rule Books (Rising Stars) Felice Arena & Phil Kettle
8-12 The True Story of the Three Little Pigs Jon Scieszka
8-12 Vesuvius Poovius Kes Gray & Chris Mould
8-12 Brain Box Anita Ganeri
8-12 Brain Anna Sandeman
8-12 Mark Two Jeanne Willis
8-12 What’s the Matter, Royston Knapper? Gervase Phinn
8-12 Captain Underpants Series Dav Pilkey
8-12 The Farty Joke Book U Smell (Red Fox)
9-12 Horrible Science – Blood, Bones andBody Bits and Chemical Chaos Nick Arnold & Tony de Saulles
9-12 Clockwork Phillip Pullman
9-12 Aladdin and the Enchanted Lamp Phillip Pullman
9-12 Kindlekrax Phillip Ridley
9-12 The Adventure series – Lion Adventure;Tiger Adventure Willard Price
9-12 Harry Potter Series J K Rowling
9-14 Mega Bites Brain – Inner Workings of the Grey Matter Dr Richard Walker
9-14 Think of a Number Johnny Ball
9-14 Visual Encyclopedia Dorling Kindersley
9-14 Stormbreaker Anthony Horowitz
9-14 Temple of Tikal Adam Guillain

Reading strategies and useful web links