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Why Starting A Family Book Club Can Transform Days At Home

Starting a book club has the potential to be a long-running family tradition.

Sean Kelly

Games, movies, crafting, and cooking are all great family activities that strengthen bonds and create new memories from inside the house. But starting a book club has the potential to be a long-running family tradition that will give you a whole range of shared experiences to build on. Let’s take a look at some of the meaningful things that can come from starting a family book club, and how to get your own club going.

Start With A Purpose

Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

The best family activities are ones that have a purpose and objective, whether you’re on a walk around the neighborhood for exercise or visiting a museum to learn about history. What do you, as parents, hope to achieve from starting a book club, aside from creating a bond with your kids? What do you hope your kids learn from the experience, and how do you take that underlying educational imperative and make it fun and engaging? Once you’ve established that, you’re off and running.

Find A Theme

When you land on your goals for the book club and establish a purpose, choosing the right book becomes much easier. If you’re stuck, ask your kids what they want to read about and come up with some options to explore together. A great way to narrow it down is to figure out what themes and subjects you want to tackle. If your kids are getting to the age where you can approach some real-world lessons, start with a book that addresses things like civil rights history, climate change, or even philosophy.

For families with younger kids, a powerful theme that really helps children grow is anything imagination-focused. Find a great children’s novel that encourages exploration and creativity, or even one that promotes reading comprehension through an engaging story.

Create A Nomination Process

Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

A fun alternative to choosing books is to assign your kids the task of making a list of books they want to read, with reasons why they chose them. If you have multiple children, creating a system where each child gets to come up with nominations after every book ensures that everyone gets a turn.

Once you’ve got the nomination list together, put the books up to a vote and pick the one that has the most votes. This will teach your kids about equality, and it’s a great way of making sure everyone’s voice is heard. You can outline a different theme each time you’re ready to start a new book, or leave it open for the kids to bring in whatever selections they want.

Stick To A Schedule

As all parents know, keeping kids on a schedule and creating routines goes a long way in almost every aspect of life, and your book club should be no different. Figure out a time and a meeting place, and make sure you’re all coming together to discuss whichever chapter of the book you’re on.

Sticking to a schedule gives the whole family something to look forward to, especially after a long day of work and school.

Ask Questions And Encourage Discussion

Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

Your family book club will be a memorable bonding experience, so it’s important to make the most of the time you carve out of the week to devote to it. The most effective way to do this is to come up with some meaningful questions about the chapter you’re on. Why did a character do what they did? What was the lesson learned at the end? How did that chapter make everyone feel?

If you’re purposeful in your questioning, it’s bound to create a dialogue that will naturally evolve into some laughter and thoughtful discussion. Having fun with this, while still keeping it focused, will make your book club a huge success.

Take Your Book Club Out Into The World

You’ll sometimes come across a book that makes you want to get out and experience the world around you; whether it’s one that is set in New York City or one that tells a tale among the vast green fields of Ireland. If you’re able to take a family trip as part of your book club and bring the setting of the book to life, the experience will instantly become a multi-dimensional adventure that you and your kids will never forget.

From No Plans To A Lasting Memory

Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

Starting a family book club is a simple way to take indoor activities to the next level, and create a lasting memory in the process. It doesn’t matter if you go out to dinner and a movie, go bike riding around the neighborhood, or stay inside and play board games — there’s nothing better than quality time spent with the people you love the most.

Your book club is sure to take that quality time up a notch, giving you something to look forward to on a regular basis as a family unit. The bond will only grow stronger from there.