Summer reading for play and progress

Summer is finally here! The days are longer and the sun is warmer. The barbecue is on and friends and family play outdoors. As you savor the changes I encourage you to weave reading into your summer days and nights. The children in your life will benefit so much.

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Babies love to read. So do toddlers. “Books build better brains” says Reach out and Read and their web site has simple yet powerful ways to foster the habit of reading with even the smallest child. Reading aloud helps children acquire early language skills, develop positive associations with books and helps children build a stronger foundation for school success.

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Click image to enlarge graphic. Source: The First Book Blog

For school-age children, summer reading is key for maintaining and strengthening the literacy skills gained in the previous school year. On the PBS Parents web site national education consultant Julie M. Wood, Ed.D. says that “the stakes for children who do not read over summer vacation are high. Substantial research on this topic shows it’s usually the students who can least afford to lose ground as readers who are most likely to suffer from summer reading loss and fall far behind their peers. The few months of loss in reading skills compounds over the years; by the time children reach middle school, those who haven’t read during the summers may have lost as much as two years worth of achievement.”

Dr. Wood says that if children read just six books over summer vacation, they will likely avoid summer reading loss. From PBS here are a few ideas for reaching–and going beyond–this six book goal: Continue reading