School lets out, kids get relaxed, and then you look around and realize they have lost that drive to keep learning. I get it. How to get your kids to read all summer long. Without fighting, without bickering, and without whining. Yes, it can be done and I’m going to give you some tools to make this summer the one when your kids enjoy it.
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find something they actually enjoy reading
This may seem like a simple thing to ask/know, but do you actually know what your kids like to read? Example: Try and get my oldest boy to read a non-fiction book and it’s like pulling teeth, but hand him something along the lines of Harry Potter-ish and it’s on. Jackson on the other hand likes inappropriate graphic novels…you know, Captain Underpants and such lol. Ella will “read” anything princess, fairies, and butterflies. Shocker I know. 🙂
During the summer, we pick one day every week we go to the library. They pick out books they want to read, and I pick out one for each of them that I want them to read. We can read it together or they can read it by themselves and tell me all about it.
If we’re going to run errands a particular day, they bring the current book they’re reading. Are we going to have to wait at the doctor’s office for a visit? They bring their book. You get the idea.
I knew I was going to have to up my game this year so I’m not above bribery. I’m not. So they all know the amount of books they have to read to be able to get the grand prize. A trip to Carowinds before school is back. That’s right, the incentive has kicked their reading into high gear and I’m not mad about it.
What do your kids really want to do this summer? Is it financially possible to pull off? Put those thinking caps on or better yet…ask them.
I do require a few extras on their part though. I found these printouts from Teachers Pay Teachers and I make Jackson fill them out since he struggles with reading comprehension the most. He’s got one full book down and it’s working great.
Ella is obviously a new reader since she just finished up Kindergarten so I’m focusing more on learning to sound out new words during her reading time. She is slower and although it can be time consuming, she is so dang proud of herself.
Utilize Pinterest for help. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve looked a book up to not only see if it’s appropriate for my kids, but if it had great reviews by kids themselves. A great resource is Epic!-Books for Kids.
Show them by example
We all know kids will mimic what they see and I want them to see how much I adore reading. I get lost in all the real life stories of people who triumphed through heartache, took a stab at something they never thought they could do, and give hope to those who need it. Can you tell I’m more of a non-fiction gal? lol.
My goal is to obviously instill not only a love of reading, but for them not to lose all those things they learned during the school year. One book at a time.