Thursday, 23 May 2019

Keep on Reading: Tips for Bridging the Summer Gap

Schools are celebrating the end of another year this week, basking in the hard-won achievements together with their students. The end of school is a time for educators to take a breath, reflect and plan to do it all over again. For students, school’s out for summer, but that doesn’t mean the learning has to end.

The balance shifts from school to home and community to ensure that students don’t lose ground over the summer break. Struggling readers in particular can use the time to continue their growth in reading. The key is to make it fun and relevant, which may seem like trying to disguise broccoli as a treat. If all of those Instagram posts can be believed, it is possible – and you can do it for reading, too.

Here are just a few ideas to keep kids reading this summer:

1. See a movie – and then read about it. Summer blockbusters are a great way to get kids excited about a story. Disney favorites Aladdin and The Lion King both have chapter book treatments for grades 3-7. Aladdin: Far from Agrabah is an original story based on the main characters from the film and is written for grades 5-9. Nexflix and other streaming services are a great source of older films based on books, such as the Harry Potter series, The Hobbit, Where the Wild Things Are and Chronicles of Narnia. Read the books together, or ask your child to read it and report back on the differences from the movie adaptation.

2. Visit your local library. Public libraries are a great source of books and movies. It’s often free — and a great way to engage in reading activities on rainy afternoons. Some libraries offer weekly summer camps or day programs to keep boredom at bay. A lot of bookstores also have special promotions to encourage summer reading. For example, Barnes & Noble's summer reading program features picks by age group and free rewards.

3. Use technology: Schools with active licenses for technology programs used during the school year will often extend usage during the summer. BrightFish Reading lets kids log in from home or anywhere with a device and an Internet connection. If your child is planning to use a reading program such as BrightFish Reading over the summer, make sure to set achievable goals and keep a running points tally on the fridge for extra motivation. 

Most technology programs track usage and progress.
You can use this information to motivate your child.

4. Create high-value rewards: Many programs come with built-in rewards, such as the points cards and game store in BrightFish Reading. You can also create meaningful rewards for your child to encourage reading, such as the opportunity to eat a favorite snack, win prizes or participate in an activity. Set the bar for earning these rewards and create an awards ceremony at the end of the month.

5. Make it real: If your child likes to cook, craft or build, find a project and make reading the instructions a key part of it. Take a recipe out of your family cookbook or download a page from a DIY or recipe website. Assign your child to create a list of ingredients or materials and read the instructions aloud. Go on a shopping excursion together to get the items and post pictures of the final "product" on your fridge and social media pages.

Read our summer reading tips for BrightFish Reading. 

1 comment:

  1. As a result, they may lose their desire to read, effecting their schoolwork and desire to learn. Research has found that the most important determinant of language and literacy comes from parents who are engaged with their children when it comes to learning to read.