The key to summer reading is access to books! Not just any books. My experience is that many kids self-select books that are too difficult for them, so my best advice to parents is to use AR levels to suggest books for your child.
You can find the AR levels at ARbookfind.com. You can build a virtual bookbag and take this list with you to the public library. Alternatively, while you’re at the library, you could use a computer to log on to ARbookfind.com and check right then and there.
Other ways to help your child at the library this summer:
* Plan a reading list and get books from your library
* Schedule regular trips to the library
* Check out books to read aloud, too!
You might like to buy books at garage sales and thrift stores or organize a PTA book swap for summer reading. Audio books are a great resource.
Have older kids read aloud to younger siblings and friends. Then turn the tables and let those younger siblings read the same story to Big Bro and Big Sis. (That’s a teaching strategy that really works!)
Don’t expect your child’s online reading to keep his skills honed. Online reading usually is skimming—kids need to read deeper to develop and maintain skill levels for learning.
Set a time each day for reading. When I was young, we had a “no electronics” rule every afternoon in the summer. That worked, because we lived in Tampa, Florida—the lightning capital of the world where it rained every afternoon. The “no electronics” rule applied to all our friends, too: we all hung out reading books together for a couple of hours (often determined by how long the rainstorm lasted). It was a really popular daily event in our neighborhood!