How to Improve Reading Skills: 5 Active Reading Techniques for Success

Written by: The Story of Sprout



Time to read 5 min


Do you want to take your reading skills to the next level? Well, look no further. Enhancing your reading skills can open a world of possibilities for you. This stands true whether you are a student wanting to excel in academics or an avid reader hungry for insightful tales. This blog post will dive into the tips and strategies on how to improve reading skills. But why should you learn to read better? 

Regular reading helps you improve your communication skills and also fosters critical thinking. Additionally, research indicates that reading reduces stress levels and boosts cognitive ability. To put it another way, it resembles a mental exercise. Instead of strengthening our body muscles and building muscle mass, reading is a workout that puts our brain to work. It also helps keep our brains sharp and agile. This blog post will equip you with five practical tips and techniques to sharpen your reading skills. So let’s dive in and uncover the secret sauce to becoming an active reader.

How to Improve Reading Skills: 5 Active Reading Techniques for Success

How To Improve Reading Skills

1. Create a Conducive Reading Environment

How to improve reading skills is a common question asked by students of all ages. One effective strategy to practice reading actively is to create a conducive reading environment. Start by choosing a cozy spot for yourself. You can choose a cozy corner of your room or maybe a sunny spot in a park. It can also be your favorite chair or comfy couch. Next, try to eliminate any potential distractions that could divert your attention. Turn off the TV, silence your phone notifications, and choose a peaceful spot. This will help you concentrate and engage better with your reading material. 

If you’re still thinking about how to improve reading skills, ensure optimal lighting in your reading area. Choose a warm, soft light source that doesn’t strain your eyes. Plus, organize your books well and play soft background music to create a calming ambiance. 

Moreover, do you know that how to help my first grader read better is a common concern among parents and educators? The one-stop answer to this query is to practice mnemonics with your child and create a reading-friendly environment. You can use the above tips to help develop surroundings that motivate your child to read. 

2. Set Reading Goals and Objectives

Setting reading goals and objectives is a tried-and-tested strategy to improve reading skills. You can also customize these goals to your interests and preferences. If you’re seeking guidance on improving reading skills, self-reflection is a great step to start. Think about your reading habits. This will help you identify areas you want to work on. Then, ask yourself, “What genres do I enjoy?” Also, think about which reading skills you wish to develop. 

When you have analyzed your objectives, break them down into small, manageable chunks. Suppose you want to improve your vocabulary. In this situation, you can pick 5 unique words each day and target yourself to memorizing them over the week. Plus, make sure to monitor your reading progress over time. Moreover, if you’re specifically exploring techniques on how to improve kids’ reading, learn to celebrate small milestones. Treat your little one to ice cream or his favorite chocolate whenever he finishes reading 5 or 10 chapters. 

3. Annotate and Take Meaningful Notes

Mastering the art of reading is a lifelong journey. It repeatedly prompts students to inquire about how to improve their reading skills. And what better ways to improve reading skills than taking notes, annotating, and engaging with the text you’re reading? When you annotate a text, you engage actively with the book. This helps you remember important events and make connections. 

To take meaningful notes:

  • Pay attention to what you’re reading.
  • Break down complicated ideas into simple concepts.
  • Jot down the main developments in your own words.

Plus, don’t just copy narratives from the book. Instead, ask yourself questions and write down your opinions on it. These personal insights will help you think critically and develop a deeper understanding.

4. Ask Yourself Questions and Make Predictions

Reading is about more than passively absorbing the words on a page. You need to analyze the text you’re reading actively. This helps enhance your comprehension skills. Moreover, make it a habit to ask yourself questions when you’re reading. By stimulating your curiosity through questions, you can develop a deeper understanding. 

People often inquire about how to improve reading skills by making predictions. This approach, however, is quite simple. If you’re reading an article about climate change, you can ask yourself questions like “which factors contribute to it?”

It is also recommended to pause what you’re reading for a while now and then and intrigue yourself. You can do this by asking yourself, “how does climate change impact our daily lives?”. All in all, using a prediction-based mindset and asking yourself questions are top activities to improve reading skills.

5. Use Skimming and Scanning Techniques

Skimming and scanning are your best bet if you’re looking for techniques on how to improve reading skills. Skimming involves taking a sneak peek of the content. This helps you get a general idea of what the content is about. Skimming focuses on headings, subheadings, and any highlighted or bolded text. This technique helps you locate the main theme of a material. It also enables you to learn the key points without delving into detail. 

Scanning involves looking for specific information within a text. Instead of going from word to word, you quickly check the content to locate specific keywords or phrases. This approach is useful when you’re reading for specific facts or figures within a large chunk of text. 


The question of how to improve reading skills is frequently pondered by individuals at all stages of life. However, many don’t understand that improving your reading skills is gradual. It requires dedication and practice. Plus, reading is not just about scanning the words on a page. It is about engaging with what you’re reading and connecting to it. So pick a good book today and dive into the numerous benefits of reading. 

And speaking of a good book, don’t forget to check out Sprout. It entails the thrilling story of a young boy named Woodsprout. He embarks on a journey of personal growth. This modern-day fairy tale offers an enchanting adventure. It also prompts you to contemplate the meaning of life. Blending elements of a philosophical adventure, Sprout helps to captivate youngsters. It also serves as a testament to the power of curiosity. So get your copy of Sprout today and let your imagination flourish!