I was the kid who went everywhere with a book in my hand, and I still LOVE to read! It is important to me to foster that same love of reading in my own children and so far I have two big kids who love to read and a three little ones who love being read to.
Whether you have a struggling reader you want to encourage, or need gifts for a kid who already loves to read, here are some great reader gift ideas!
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First off, if you have an avid reader I highly recommend purchasing an Amazon Kindle (just the basic version!) My kids received this from Santa last year and they have been an amazing cost saver for me! Why? NO MORE LIBRARY FINES! If you didn’t know this already, most libraries offer eBook versions on their website. Once you have it set up, it is incredibly easy to find and “borrow” eBooks onto your Kindle. It actually works right through Amazon with our library! I can’t tell you how amazing it is to get a book right when my kids want or need it. Now, you can get the fancier Amazon Fire tablet for about the sameprice. The Fire is a color screen and you have the ability to download apps. For my older kids I prefer the Kindle so that I know when they are on it, it is straight reading. The Kindle is also made for reading so it is easier on their eyes and super easy to turn pages. My kids’ teachers also allow them to bring a Kindle to school to read during their extra time and would not allow a Fire Tablet.
Really, my kids use their Kindles all the time, they can get library books on them, and they are portable and easy to use. I highly recommend them!
Reading is so much better in a comfortable place! Ideally, this would involve sand and sun for me, but for kids, just having their own dedicated “reading chair” can go a long way!
We bought these Big Joe beanbags for my kids 2 Christmases ago. They are great! These beanbags are comfortable to sit in, lightweight, with a pocket to hold books on the side and a handle for easy transport. The Amazon reviews mention the only problem we’ve had…the beans get smooshed by bigger kids! My (very tall and big) 12 year old son’s bag lost most of its shape in year 2. But they do sell these replacement beans (which I am putting in my Amazon cart right now!) The durability of the actual bean bag is top notch, no rips at the seams or spilling out beans.
Another fun option would be a hanging reading chair like this one.
A cozy blanket, again it is about making reading a comfortable and enjoyable event. If they are snuggled up in a soft blanket, sitting in their comfy beanbag, they will want to read for longer (which is only a problem if they need to be doing chores or homework!). You can get super soft blankets for $10 or $15 at Costco or if you are feeling crafty you can follow my DIY Quillow blanket instructions. This Sherpa/fleece throw has amazing reviews and is inexpensive!
Another gift idea for readers is a reading light. The basic Kindle is not backlit, so if it gets dark this will help your little reader keep on reading!
What I think is the most important part of lighting that fire for reading is finding that one book that connects with your child and makes their imagination soar! There are lots of book guides and recommendations out there, but here are a few of our family’s favorites by age/grade.
Junie B. Jones box set
Babysitter’s Club (this links to the new graphic novel version which I don’t love…but the older versions aren’t in print. Look at the library for these!
Fourth and Fifth Grade
The Maze of Bones (39 Clues, No. 1)“>39 clues book
The Mysterious Benedict Society Collection“>The Mysterious Benedict Society
Sarah, Plain and Tall 30th Anniversary Edition“>Sarah Plain and tall
Where the Red Fern Grows“>Where the Red Fern Grows
What it costs
If you were to purchase all of the items (Not including books) in this gift idea, it would cost around $150. You could definitely leave out the Kindle and the to save a big portion of the cost, or leave out the bean bag chair.
Who this Gift is for
This gift is great for kids of all ages, toddler through teens! There is a special smaller Big Joe Chair for the tinier kids (toddlers).
Does this spark a gift idea for a little reader in your family? I hope so!