This story was contributed by Courtney Gault, Founder of greenwich play and originally ran on Greenwich Moms.
Winter is the perfect time to find a cozy spot at home to create a book nook. You may be thinking to yourself, “We have books, and bookshelves, and a chair we read in… we’re good.” Well, that is not a book nook!
A book nook is a designated space that, by virtue of its setup, invites a child to independently relish a book, whereas a chair and books on a shelf are not explicitly for reading. A book nook is a cozy spot, like a warm welcoming hug, a place where your children can snuggle up with you, or by themselves, and enjoy a great story.
Too often we assume that our children will perform the desired outcome just because we’ve given them the tools for success. You have a comfy chair, you have books, you have a bookshelf! But, that doesn’t mean your child is going to explore reading.
The goal is to carve out a cozy space for your child to feel welcomed, comfortable and inspired. Mason Cooley said, “Reading gives us someplace to go when we have to stay where we are.” Make the book nook in your home that place.
Get creative with the space you choose for your nook. I converted our unused fireplace into a book nook. I used things we already had in our house like pillows and blankets and childproofing tape. It wasn’t fancy, but it was perfect. Every family has something special that makes them feel safe, cozy and home – all the feelings of a great book nook. Whether it’s a blanket, a pillow, a picture or even a smell, try to incorporate as many elements as possible.
I always encourage families to make room for a book nook. I also love using pieces that can function in multiple locations, and are easy to maneuver, like a little bookcase on wheels (so versatile and can literally go anywhere).