From old favourites to bestsellers, kids and teens love to pick and choose their own summer reads.
Jul 26, 2017
Summer holidays are a time when children are free to experience books in a different way than the rest of the year. Daily summer reading also helps avoid a problem that educators have noticed: a long break from school can cause students to lose some of their reading achievement.
What should your child read in his or her 'down time'? Librarians believe that any type of reading - in print or online - is worthwhile, and that summer is a great time for children to develop the habit of picking out their own books. Some tips:
- In pre-school and the primary grades, many kids love to read the same book, again and again. That's okay: repetition helps reinforce word recognition and gives early learners confidence in their reading.
- From preschool through the primary grades - and even in their tweens and teens - many children have old favourites that they'll pick up and read every summer. These much-loved books can be classics, or even young-reader books they enjoyed when they were 'little'. Often, as children grow older, they experience these well-thumbed books in new ways.
- Graphic novels are growing rapidly in popularity, and have become respected as a literary genre all their own. The range of topics, themes and reading levels is much broader than ever before. Your child can find a wide choice of age-appropriate graphic novels at most libraries and bookstores.
- For "tweens" (10 to 13 years of age), summer is a chance to catch up on books that all their friends are reading. Book series that feature the same characters are especially popular with pre-adolescents. But while some kids read to be "part of the gang", others choose books that will deepen their understanding of themselves and the world around them. Both options are fine.
- Many older teens (14 and up) are able to read at an adult level, but still prefer YA (Young Adult) books, especially when they're reading for themselves rather than for school. YA books are published in a wide variety of genres: fantasy, science fiction, mysteries, adventures, social realism, romances and sports-oriented stories. YA fiction is as rich and varied as adult novels: the difference is that the hero is always a teenager, and the books are written from a young person's point of view, often in the first person.
- Whatever books they pick up this summer, remember that your kids are never too old to enjoy reading together with you. You may even want to start a summer parent-child book club with your son or daughter and their friends and their parents. What better way to make the love of books a family affair?