Reading comes naturally to me; I’ve always loved it and always will. But for some people, especially kiddos who would rather be vegging out in the summer, sometimes you have to get a little creative to keep those little brains going. Also, while I have been writing this post my kids have watched at least 3 episodes of My Little Pony so don’t think I am above some quality vegging out time.
Summer Reading Tips for Kids
1. Get thee to a library
Most public libraries have some sort of summer reading program that provides fun incentives to keep kids reading over their vacation. My local branch even has a program for adults so the whole family can do it together.
2. Don’t dismiss audio books
Audio books are great for summer road trips and are available to check out either on CD or are downloadable to your device in so many libraries. Listening to a book is still a great tool for expanding vocabulary and getting kids hooked on a story. The Harry Potter books are particularly awesome in audio book form and can be enjoyed by the whole family.
3. Don’t be critical of their choices
Let she who has not read 400 Babysitters’s Club books cast the first stone. Sometimes our kids are going to be into books that we are just not into. I am preaching to myself here. I had dreams of my daughter delighting in Anne of Green Gables so I have to bite my tongue when she comes home with another Barbie Mermaid or magic princess puppy fairy something book. But as long as their choices are age appropriate, don’t be too quick to critique their taste. They are reading and enjoying it, that’s what matters the most.
4. All reading counts
Not every kid is going to love reading fiction. Remember that whether they are reading a Minecraft instructional handbook, baseball stats, or model airplane instructions they are still reading! Be sneaky and ask them to read the grocery list to you while you shop or to be in charge of reading the rules for a new board game. It all adds up.
5. Lead by example
Kids who see their parents reading for enjoyment are much more likely to do it themselves. Make sure they SEE you reading. I often read eBooks on an app on my iPhone but for all my kids know I am just on Facebook or playing Candy Crush (which okay sometimes I am also doing). I make it a point to get out an actual physical book so they really see me enjoying reading.
These are just a few suggestions that have worked for me, above all make it fun! This shouldn’t be something that you or your kids stress over. You know your kids and what will work the best for them. Trust yourself and your kids and have a wonderful summer!
Have your own reading tips for kids? Share!
Originally published May 28, 2015