The month of January is still young, which means if you neglected your New Year’s resolutions this year (guilty), there’s still more than enough time for you to make some!
In truth, we can and should be making resolutions on a regular basis, regardless of whether or not a new year is approaching. I’m sure if I sat down every week or so and scrawled down some short-term goals, I wouldn’t feel so pressured to make these broad and sweeping New Year’s resolutions every December 31st.
Making New Year’s resolutions doesn’t have to be anything crazy, and your resolutions shouldn’t always seem so daunting that you doubt your ability to stick to them. Resolutions can be simple.
Exercise at least three times a week.
Don’t drink coffee after 3 p.m.
Have a family game night every other Friday.
New Year’s resolutions can be beneficial to the whole family, according to an article by Deseret News. Working on resolutions can help kids:
- Identify areas they’d like to change or improve upon.
- Feel like they have more control over their future.
- Engage in dialogue with parents about goals and life preferences.
- Organize both actions and thoughts.
- Learn how to go about achieving goals big and small.
- Feel accomplished when they’re able to achieve even their smallest goals.
If you want your child to start reading more (which comes with a myriad of benefits on its own), you can even encourage them to make resolutions that have to do with reading books. Below are some ideas for reading-based New Year’s resolutions to appeal to the readers (or readers-in-training) of your family.
1. Read more books per year.
You can break down this resolution even further by setting a goal for how many books to read per month. If reading is not among your child’s favorite activities, perhaps encourage them to finish one book per month, or 12 per year. If your child is an avid reader, or if they’re reading short picture books, you could have them aim for one book per week, or 52 per year.
Not sure where to find all these books? Locate picture books from Cardinal Rule Press to beef up your reading list here.
2. Read every day.
For this resolution, your child can set a daily reading goal based on time or number of pages per day. Let them decide what would be a fair amount of daily reading. Perhaps 20 minutes every evening? 10 pages per day? This resolution is bound to get your child to pick up a book on a daily basis, and they can start out with a goal that is modest and achievable.
3. Branch out to find more diverse books.
Does your child have a preferred genre of literature that they’d choose over anything else? Or a favorite series they struggle to venture from (I know it used to be a challenge for me to read anything except Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson series)? Pepper your home book collection with books of different reading levels and genres. You can use this checklist to ensure that your home library is all-encompassing:
- Realistic fiction
- Historical fiction
- Fairy Tale/Fable/Folk Tale
- Science Fiction
4. Participate in a book club.
For this fun resolution, you could start a family book club or encourage your child to start a book club with neighbors or peers. Every week, they can meet and discuss the group’s book of choice. This results in engaging conversations and increased reading comprehension levels.
Not sure how to get started with a book club? Download our FREE How To Host a Family Book Study Night! Learn, step-by-step, how to plan, organize and implement a book study at your home, school or the building you work in.
5. Track your reading.
This is a great resolution because not only does it get your child reading, it also gets them writing! For this resolution, your child can keep track of which books they’re reading and for how long. As they’re reading a book or upon finishing it, they could keep reading journals where they reflect on what they are reading. At the end of the year, your child can look back on all the books they were able to read.
If you haven’t already, you can sit down with your child and encourage them to brainstorm some constructive resolutions for the new year and beyond. Creating and achieving these resolutions teaches children how to set and run after goals –– a skill they’ll need in order to be happy and industrious adults.
Making resolutions will also foster a growth mindset in your child as they see themselves as capable of even the seemingly impossible. This Could Be You, by Cindy Williams Schrauben, is a picture book that deals with growth mindset and encourages children to believe in themselves and their abilities. Check out the Spring 2022 release here!
Don’t forget to download your FREE How to host a Family Night Book Study guide!
A senior in the University of Michigan-Flint’s Secondary English Teacher’s Certificate Program, Lauren is an aspiring writer and English educator. Along with interning at Cardinal Rule Press, Lauren has worked for UM-Flint’s Writing Center and student newspaper. She enjoys running, being outside, and (naturally) reading in her spare time.