Summer vacation can be lethal to kids’ reading advancements. That doesn’t necessarily mean that school should continue without pause but reading is one of the few academic pursuits in which you can learn just by doing it. You can pick up the proper structure of a story, gathering information, new vocabulary, general spelling conventions, and of course, encouraging imagination. That’s a lot to take advantage of without needing any sort of teaching background!
Here are some ideas to keep the kids reading and working on their literacy.
Summer isn’t the time to get strict about what your kids are reading. You might be tempted to press the classics on them or buy academically pointed books, but that may backfire during summertime! Instead, let them read what most grabs their attention, anything from comic books, magazines, travel books, or graphic novels. If they don’t have something that they are excited to read, local libraries or bookstore are full of people who will be able to give suggestions.
Once you pinpoint what books your kids would be interested in, make sure they have access to them everywhere. There is something about a pile of exciting books that appeals to pretty much everyone. Keep books in the living room, near their beds, and even in the car as entertainment.
Make It An Event
Stop the day every once in a while for twenty minutes or so. Pick a nice spot outside on a blanket or in the house with pillows and blankets. Serve some lemonade or another refreshing treat. Then, everyone in the house stops what they are doing and reads. This especially works when the day’s activities involve chores! This time not only gets the kids reading but it also serves as an example for them to see you reading too. The added bonus is a bit of downtime for tired moms. Just try not to fall asleep!
Get Creative With Tech
There are so many apps available to us nowadays that involve reading. From the library app that allows you to check out digital books to Hooked on Phonics apps that sings songs and generally entertains. You can also find fabulous books on tape that use voice actors to incredible results. These help pull in reluctant readers who might be less intimidated than with actual books.
Make It A Game
I’m sure you remember the old classic Mad Libs. It turns out they are great for teaching kids the parts of speech AND gets them to read a silly story after! You can find them with all sort of themes and subjects. There are also Story Cubes that ask players to create narratives based on pictures they roll. This reinforces the skill of picking out details and identifying the beginning, middle, and end. You could even create your own reading games and activities as you go about the day.
Whatever ways you choose to bring more literacy into your summer, emphasize the fun and entertainment parts rather than the achievement. There’s time enough in school for kids to worry about reading levels and comprehension activities. This is a chance for them to discover the less arduous side of books.