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Challenge: Reading Together

​3 Ways to Complement Your Student’s Schoolwork with Literature

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Reading can be a chore with the wrong book—help your student become a lifelong reader and do better in school by finding the right pieces literature! Whether the characters or story connect to your student, his or her studies, or the age group as a whole, a book with the right themes can truly complement your student’s schoolwork.

1. Find similar characters

If your student is hesitant to try reading for fun, add a possible instant connection to the book by suggesting material with characters to which your student can relate. If your student can see him- or herself in the leading lad or lass, the book may seem more relevant and interesting.

Hop online and search for age-appropriate books with a main character who shares a similarity or two with your child. This may include age, gender, cultural background, race, religion, family, hobbies, or nearly any other personal touchstone.

2. Mirror current or future classroom topics

If your student is struggling in a certain subject, try checking out a book that includes that topic in an approachable way. Subjects like science, history, and math can all come to life in young adult literature and may help make the topic seem more relevant and understandable.

3. Focus on age-appropriate issues

So many issues at school are based around the social aspect, and literature is a great way to delve into age-appropriate social and personal problems. For young students, getting along with others or feeling brave while out of the comfort of their home may be important topics to cover. Older learners may benefit from books that touch on problems like bullying, eating disorders, or simply finding your place in the world. These stories may be great conversation starters between you and your student, and they have the potential to shed light on any issues that are or could have gotten in the way of the focus of school: learning.

For more tips and strategies to help your student succeed in school, visit

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