The Nation’s 2015 reading scores carry a serious message to parents: American students aren’t reading.

It’s easy to pass the blame for this off on the schools, and in all likelihood, the education system is contributing to the general decline in reading. But do American parents also share part of the blame?

I asked myself this question when I ran across the following list from Gladys Hunt’s Honey for a Child’s Heart. She described the following ten practices as surefire ways to “raise a nonreader”:

1. Have the television on at all times. Make sure you put a television set and a computer in every room. (Don’t forget the kitchen!)

2. Keep the place neat – no books or literary magazines in sight.

3. Never let your children see you read a book.

4. Never take your kids to the library.

5. Never read stories aloud past age two.

6. Never talk about ideas while eating meals.

7. Keep the lights down low. Buy only forty-watt lightbulbs.

8. Schedule your children for every activity you can think of so they won’t be bored.

9. Never play any table games together.

10. Absolutely no reading in bed or good lamps to make it easy to do.

Given that most Americans likely are doing many of these things today, is it any wonder that the Nation’s Report Card shows that a little more than 1 in 3 American students are reading proficiently?

Want to ensure you don’t raise a “nonreader”? Check out Gladys Hunt’s Honey for a Child’s Heart for some great tips and age appropriate book lists to foster a love of reading in your child!

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