Friday, 22 November 2013

Reading Chest Review

I love any opportunity to further develop my boys reading ability.  They have well-stocked bookshelves but I find it hard gauging the level of book they should be reading.  I also think the hardest part of learning to read is maintaining their enthusiasm and desire to continue reading. 

They seem to enjoy fresh reading material and with Reading Chest on the Silver plan, eldest is having a regular stream of new books to discover.  He seems more motivated than ever before, the books seem well suited and interesting.  Eldest has asked to stay up a little later to read another when its book delivery day!  He gets very excited as the envelope is addressed to him, its fun getting your own post when you’re only six.

As a parent I would gladly continue paying for the scheme when my review trial runs out, I can see eldest benefiting from it already!  After payday I might set youngest off on his Reading Chest adventure, so I can see improvements for him too.  It is difficult juggling both boys and I feel his reading needs some work now after so much focus on his brother.  After all eldest is sailing through the turquoise (stage 7) book band and in a short while I might try moving him on to a more challenging band. 

We have had to play catch up as the focus on reading in Wales is naturally Welsh, but because of this English does suffer.  But thankfully with Reading Chest this will no longer be the case.  I have a feeling eldest will fly through the levels and continue to develop a love of reading, which is a relief as he is getting stage 4 books sent home each week with school which is below those we tend to read.

Motivating a child to read can be tricky, but Reading Chest seems to think of everything, they send you a little reward chart to add stickers every time your child completes a story!  Eldest enjoys adding the sticker after finishing a book and it seems to spur him on!!!

I noticed children can share a subscription which makes it better value for money, on the silver band you can make two lists, so you could have one book a week coming for a younger sibling so they still feel part of the reading journey and learn along the way too! 

You can of course head to the library and access books for free but I think I would prefer to pay and have a course of books tailored for my son’s level with the aim of encouraging development, rather than we all head en-masse to the library and somehow leave with the touch and feel books for children much younger just because they like the look of them!

The silver band costs £12.95 a month but I think its very fair, given this includes the postage to return all your books.  You get four initially and then you can return three back each time (up to a maximum of four swaps in a month), you also get the reward chart, some stickers, a bookmark and a little bag to keep the books save.  The books are promptly dispatched so you are never waiting long for your next delivery.  Eldest looks forward to seeing the postman and getting stuck into his next new book.

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