Parenting Tip: Moving Forward this Summer in Reading (No Slide Here)
Has the summer already started for the kiddos? We have three more days and it is officially on. While I am looking forward to not having to wake up with the chickens five days a week and wracking my brain on what to make for lunch, I am in no way fooling myself that the learning this summer is on a break too. I don’t believe in summer breaks for learning. I used to, but not anymore. Studies indicate that children can lose up to two whole months’ worth of learning over a summer if they do not continue to read, write and do some sort of math every week. We don’t have time to take two steps forward during the school year only to take one backward during the summer. In fact I would hope to move forward a step or two. I don’t intend to have full-fledged school every day, but some sort of focus on learning somehow, someway will happen. There will be weeks when the kiddos will go out of town with grandparents and I don’t hardly expect much reading or math to happen on those weeks. One of the major areas where I want to prevent moving backward this summer? Reading. I know that it is crucial that the kiddos not only know how to read but also how to interpret or comprehend what they read. My approach? To use the method below based off of a study that looked at voluntary summer reading.
Tips to Encourage Summer Reading and Reading Comprehension:
- I will either choose or have the kiddos choose a book of interest. Find book suggestions here for kids, tweens and teens.
- Then I will have them tell me/check for reading comprehension about the book by asking certain questions.
For the Big Kids:
- What predictions did they make about the book? Did they come true or not?
- Summarize parts of the book – the oldest can tell me about the book in the car or while I am cooking. OR I will try to have her write a soundtrack to the book since she does so enjoy writing songs.
- I will also ask her to make connections with the book (real life, movies, other books she’s read)
- The oldest can write/create a blog of summer book reviews
She can also re-write the ending to the book and tell me why she made the changes/why are hers better
- Did she change the point of view?
- Did she stay within the setting?
- Are there any stereotypes about certain groups in the story or assumed by the author?
For the elementary kids:
- Title, author and illustrator (important they know the difference between the three)
- Either while reading to the soon to be second grader or if he reads to me I will ask him to tell me what he thinks will happen next and then ask him why he was right or wrong (understanding foreshadowing)
- I will also ask him to point out the plot and setting.
- He can retell the story he read to his dad or call his auntie(determine if he can summarize the events in a story correctly)
- Lastly, he will have to make connections with the book to himself, another book or movie he’s seen.
For the Preschool and Kindergarten kids:
- Title, author and illustrator (important they know the difference between the three).
- I will have my youngest call granny or granddaddy to tell them all about the book they read (determine if she can summarize the events in a story correctly).
- I will alternate reading to her and having her read to me (check for the building of her vocabulary).
- I will ask my youngest what happened at the beginning, middle and end of the book.
- Lastly, she will need to tell me what the book reminded her of (start having her make connections).
How much reading do you have planned for the kiddos this summer?