Tag Archives: summer

Websites to Help With (and Create) Summer Reading

As a librarian my first love is to books and reading. So I want to share more ways to help keep those young readers on track during these summer months.  I know it can be hard to get them to read a book, but these are websites!!!  Yes, sometimes even reading works on the web.  For more helpful technology related sites that support reading and other core skills see some my earlier post series Apps for Summer Learning. But for now allow me to share with you some websites:

1. Stone Soup www.stonesoup.com  The classic literary magazine that is written by kids for kids.  This offers a great way to kids to connect with others by reviewing books, or submitting their own imaginative work.

2. Little Write Brain www.littlewritebrain.com Let your little ones create their own characters, choose a template, and create their own stories that can be saved as free e-books.  A great site for those creative minds out there.

3. National Geographic Young Explorers www.nationalgeographic.com Increase nonfiction reading habits with the famous magazine where the highlighted text is read aloud by a narrator and the interactive links and games allow for further exploration.

4. Storyline Online www.storylineonline.net  Classic stories read by famous actors? Sign me up!

5. Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge www.scholastic.com/summer  The famous challenge is back and it allows kids to track their reading minutes, and compete against other readers around the world.  Parents you can monitor your child’s progress and find helpful book lists, and activity ideas.


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Filed under Books, ebooks, Nonfiction reading, Reading, Technology

Promote Summer Reading

Lets face it, most kids would rather be running around outside, playing on the beach, swimming, doing anything else but reading.  So here are some ways to them interested in it, and maybe even yourself.

1. Create Your Own Travel Guide.  Why should AAA and Frommers have the only travel books out there? If your family is taking a trip this summer create your travel guide. Visit the local library and search online to research about your destination. Talk to the tourist bureau to find out some local information.  But all the information together in a book to read before you leave.

2.  Online Book Talks.  Using Skype, Facetime, Voicethread, or other online programs, connect to other family members and friends throughout the country.  Read one book or have each member talk about a book they have recently finished.  Try to have at least three meetings for the summer. This is great way to connect adults with kids, and kids of different ages.

3. Read the Book Than See the Movie.  I am a huge supporter of this mainly because I feel that the movies never quite capture the essence of the book.  And with all of the new movies based on books coming out this year this is best time to learn about all the soon to be popular movies. But don’t just use  new movies, try reading some classic fiction as well.

4. Books without Words.  Sounds odd, but this is so much fun.  Read a picture book without using the words.  Let young readers make up their own story, or read as a family with each member “reading” a page and adding to the story.

5. MAD LIBS!  I must admit I still play this; especially during long car rides.  Mad Libs is a great way to improve grammar and vocabulary skills ages 9-up but this can be modified for younger users by asking for action, place, or person.

6. Cooking Up a Story.  Now BBQ’s are staple of the summer months, why not let create your cookbook to highlight some your summer favorites.  List the top ice cream flavors in alphabetical order;  give the kids a list of ingredients to create their own personal dish. Than put them all together in  your own family cookbook. Another fun activity involving food, create a meal that you read about in one of the books.  Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is great for this…How to Eat Fried Worms not so much.

7.  Scavenger Hunt.  Get friends involved for this fun activity.  Let the group of kids pick a chapter book.  Parents read it ahead of time and select two or more (but no more than 5) parts of each chapter and write a clue about said parts.  Challenge the group to read the book and whoever figures out the most clues wins.  Pick a prize like a free ice cream.

8. Create a Summer Journal/Scrap-book.  There are several online journals/scrapbooks, journal/scrap-book apps there, or go the old-fashioned way and get a physical one.  This can be an individual project or maybe a group project.  Collect souvenirs from memorable summer moments, use pictures, drawings, anything that showcases a fun summer moment.  For the journal aspect of the project at once a week choose a topic to write about, have all members participating write about that topic. It can be anything from favorite memory, best birthday ever, scariest movie, etc.  But don’t limit to once a week, allow users to add to it whenever they feel. By the time fall comes you will have a whole story celebrating that summer.

9. I’m So Board.  When its night-time or on those unfortunate rainy days get out some word board games, such as scrabble, boggle, upwords, etc.  Give bonus points for longer words or words you recently learned from a book.  Keep a running score, adding every time you play. At the end of the summer see who won and give a prize.



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Filed under Books, Language Arts, Reading, Technology