4 Tips For Making Kids' Summer Reading Lists
A "summer slide" may sound like a fun ride at a water park, but for parents and teachers, it's a serious problem. The "summer slide" is the loss of skills and knowledge that can happen to children when their minds are not stimulated enough during the summer school break. Thankfully, there is a simple, reliable way to fix the problem: reading. Studies show that children who read over the summer beat the slide and keep their skills sharp. Encourage your children by helping them make a great summer reading list. Here are 4 tips to find the best summer books for your kids.
Touch Base With Teachers
If you already know what teachers your children will have come fall, ask them if they have recommendations. Since the teachers are familiar with the upcoming coursework, they may be able to suggest books that will prepare your young students. Many schools also issue reading lists for each grade, so be sure to ask about those, too.
Talk With A Librarian
In case your local school does not suggest books, consult with a public librarian. The Association for Library Service to Children issues free summer reading lists your can download from its website. Local librarians also tend to be very knowledgeable about what area schools expect from young readers, as well as the newest and best children's books out there.
Don't Stick With Storybooks
While your children may be tempted to just read fiction all summer, make sure some non-fiction books make it onto their lists. Often, there are biographies of historical figures and famous people written just for young readers. Craft books could encourage new hobbies, like stamp collecting or making cat toys. There are also nature and science books published for all reading levels. Keeping kids' minds active and learning will help them stay sharp over the school break.
Join A Reading Challenge
To encourage children to read over the summer, some schools and public libraries have reading challenge programs. Kids sign up for the challenge and keep track of what they read to earn prizes. See if your nearby library has a reading program and provides a list of suggested books to get kids started. You also can start your own family reading challenge with the tools on this site hosted by the Scholastic company.
Picking the right books is key to getting children to read during the summer. The season offers a lot of distractions, so the books have to hold their attention. Fill their reading lists with fun, and children will want to spend time reading.