With summer vacation quickly approaching, moms are busy researching camps, splash pads, pool noodle crafts, and a myriad of other activities to keep our kiddos occupied. Books seem like a great idea, but getting our kids to read more can feel a bit overwhelming. Here are some tips and tricks to get your family excited about books this summer!
First, figure out what motivates your kids. If you have an avid reader, a great book list and weekly library trips might be enough! If not, you might need to be a little more creative. Check with your local library and see what their summer reading program is like. In the past, ours (in Cherokee County) allowed kids to earn prizes like Chick Fil A meal cards. I’ve also known families who set a goal for their kids and celebrated with ice cream or a special outing when they achieved it. Yes, we want to teach our kids that reading is its own reward, but a little outside motivation can be a great way to set them on that path!
My kids and I also enjoy reading the book and then watching the movie. This is a great list! Watching a movie once the book is finished is a great way to celebrate. Comparing and contrasting the two can be really fun. Also, it’s never too early to teach them that the book is almost always better than the movie!
Studies show that kids are able to listen and comprehend books that are above their independent reading level- and it’s really good for them! Reading aloud to your kids is great (and very beneficial) but a good audiobook can be entertaining for everyone! Choosing the right one is really important, and there are tons of great lists out there. A few of our favorites are The Chronicles of Narnia Radio Drama by Focus on the Family, The Ramona books (narrated by Stockard Channing), and Carl Hiaasen’s middle grades books Hoot, Flush, Chomp, and Scat. Listen while you color, do chores, or drive to the beach. My kids are currently loving this Star Wars series on audio!
Finally, inspire your kids by letting them see you read. Check out last year’s Summer Reading for Moms here or this year’s edition here. Set aside 20 minutes of quiet time and let everyone grab a book. Give yourself and your kids space and time to discover (or rediscover) the joy that a good story can bring.