Reading is and always will be addictive.
Many children in this younger generation don’t know the feeling of cracking open an old book and reading in solitude. I’m not saying that they don’t read, but electronics have changed their worlds. Trust me, I have a Kindle and I read on it every night, but I go through book withdrawals. The feeling of holding an actual, real life book. Reading a book on an electronic device is great, but it isn’t the same as reading a smelly book. I hope that children can still enjoy that sensation. That “can’t fall asleep because I only have one…or maybe five more chapters left to read” or that feeling of dozing off and dropping your book and losing your place. But what is even better than that is very carefully, slowly, and meticulously, picking up said book to the exact spot you stopped at. That orders in a good night of sleep.
Another issue that I have seen is teachers that use reading as a punishment. What makes a person hate something more than being told you have to do it? Children are highly impressionable and if we can teach them how important (and fun) reading is, then they will see that it is.
Reading is healthy. In many more ways than one. And I sadly see children scoffing at the mere sight of a book. No, not everybody is going to love to read. But it is a natural and healthy habit that if we can positively instill it into our students, we can be proud that we likely changed at least one child’s opinion on reading.
Even if you don’t love to read, never discourage children from reading!