Strategies for Motivating Students to Read

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  • 0:03 Motivation
  • 0:47 Classroom Library
  • 1:54 Helping Students Find Value
  • 2:54 Building Confidence
  • 3:38 Reward Systems
  • 4:13 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Derek Hughes
One of the biggest hurdles of reading instruction is helping students become motivated to read. This lesson will detail several strategies you can use in your classroom to help students become motivated, lifelong readers.


No one likes doing something they aren't motivated to do. Every day, we have to do things that we don't necessarily want to do, but we somehow motivate ourselves to follow through. For example, you may not want to wake up early in the morning for work, but you tell yourself that the money you earn will help you do something fun this weekend. Similarly, students need motivation to do things in school, including reading.

Put simply, motivation is the reason someone has for doing something. As teachers, we spend all day motivating our students to do one thing or another. Motivating students to read is a particularly challenging task. The strategies detailed in this lesson will hopefully help make it a bit easier for you.

Classroom Library

The first strategy is probably something you already do, maybe without even knowing it. By having a classroom library filled with a wide variety of texts from different genres and reading levels, you help motivate students to read. Sometimes students aren't motivated to read because they haven't found anything that is interesting and accessible to them.

It is important to have a variety of genres in your classroom library so that students can get exposure to them. As you probably know, readers tend to prefer some genres over another. While one student may like realistic fiction stories about kids, another may prefer informational texts about topics in science. Being able to choose of the type of book to read is key to lighting the spark of interest in reading.

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