School may be out for the summer but 4th-grade teacher Diego Napoles wants kids everywhere to know that summer reading is cool!
An avid reader himself, Diego is committed to helping kids create a consistent reading routine and develop a lifelong love of books–no matter the season.
In his own classroom, Deigo can often be found reading aloud his students’ favorite stories with Novel Effect.
“Read alouds help bring the pages to life with kids and they get to experience [stories] as a group,” says Diego. “I think they help build a love for reading and books.”
Tackling Summer Learning Loss
Diego notes that during summer months, when students aren’t in the classroom, their reading often subsides. This can lead to learning loss (the “summer slide”), which makes the return to academic work more challenging for many students come fall.
But Diego suggests that a simple summer reading routine is an effective way to combat summer slide and reinforce literacy skills. Cultivating a summer reading routine can also foster a love for recreational reading.
“Summer reading helps end the idea that reading is ‘school thing.’ Often, students only pick up books during the school year and never anywhere else. [Summer reading] helps make reading feel like a recreational activity instead of ‘work,’” Diego says.
Summer Reading Routine as a Family Activity
How can parents and caregivers encourage their little learners to read more during the summer months?
Read aloud together!
“Kids tend to mimic what their parents do,” says Diego. “Modeling reading and reading along with your child can help show them that reading is fun. Not to mention, it encourages some family bonding.”
Diego also recommends setting achievable and sustainable reading goals to ensure that reading remains a positive and fun experience long after the summer ends. One way to do so is to incorporate reading into your existing playtime, mealtime, or bedtime routines,
“Often I see parents set huge goals that are hard to maintain over time…do what fits your schedule and start with a small goal, like reading for 15 min each day after breakfast,” suggests Diego. “Small goal are easier to build habits around and parents can always build from those.”
Another surefire way to encourage summer reading? Choose age-appropriate books that match their interests. Diego’s top picks include Llama Llama, Red Pajama, The Bad Seed, and Goodnight Moon, which he enjoys reading aloud with his daughter. You can find these books (and many, many more) at your local library.
“I recommend that parents check out their local library over summer. There’s so many great programs they offer and thousands of new books for families to check out and read.”
Whatever you decided to read, remember to have fun and enjoy the time spent together creating magical memories.
Are you ready to jumpstart your summer reading routine? Join the Novel Effect Summer Reading Program – our FREE 5-week, self-paced program designed by educators and librarians to support literacy development for K-3 students