Reading aloud to your son from infancy onward will help him fall in love with stories. And even if reading aloud didn't enhance vocabulary and comprehension, it would still be worth doing because it offers you both a positive and peaceful interaction in your otherwise busy day.
As your son learns to decode words, try reading to each other, matching him page for page. Support him when he reads aloud to you, but don't be too quick to correct a mispronunciation. Better to let a word go than to humiliate a boy.
Even after he's a more accomplished reader, he'll still benefit from hearing you read to him. Children often understand far more words when hearing them spoken than when reading them on a page. Remember, the goal of reading aloud is to have a good time. Keep things light; read only as long as you're both enjoying it.
Expand Your Definition of Reading
Don't worry if your son isn't drawn to traditional boy classics like The Adventures of Tom Sawyer or Treasure Island. Magazines, comic books, baseball cards, newspapers, graphic novels, websites, joke collections — it all counts as reading.
Pair Books with Activities
Boys who prefer active learning to quiet contemplation may enjoy making their books come to life. Turn your boy into a human pizza after reading Pete's a Pizza. Supply simple props like rocks and boxes while reading Roxaboxen. Try out some of the recipes at the end of Eating Fractions.
Get Caught Reading
Most boys pay more attention to what we do than to what we say, so let them catch you reading. Don't reserve your books for those few minutes of quiet after you put them to bed; read in public. It's especially important for boys to see other males reading, so dads and uncles should let boys see them curling up with their favorite books. Also, leave books around the house rather than tucking them all away on shelves.
Let Boys Choose
All kids like control, and many of them don't get enough of it. We decide what they eat for dinner, when they go to bed and where they can play. Independent reading is an excellent area for your son to control, even if he chooses books you think are above or below his reading level.
Start a Book Club
Discussing books with your child and his friends is a great way to talk about values and dilemmas in a nonconfrontational setting. Just make sure that the adults don't dominate the conversation.