Encouraging Summer Reading
The school year is wrapping up and many children are looking forward to putting routine to rest for a couple of months. Taking a break is not a bad thing. We all need some rest to increase our ability to think and be creative. But a break from school doesn’t mean a break from reading – just the opposite; summer break means lots of extra time for reading!
Reading books is grounding. It gives us space to be calm and to shut the noise of the world outside, giving us clarity and focus. It allows us to explore the thoughts and feelings of others. It helps us grow our imaginations – we can dream, invent, and examine possibilities from different points of view. Reading helps us better communicate with the world around us and develop our knowledge and potential. Reading helps us understand life, culture and people which helps us adapt and adopt new ways of being and better understand and accommodate others and their perspectives and behaviours.
Picking the Right Books
Each child is different in their reading ability. Help them choose the appropriate level by the ‘rule of four:’ have your child read a book of their choice to you. If they make more than four mistakes on a page, they are reading a book that is above their level. For their own reading, have them choose something that they can be successful in; this will give them the foundation to work towards more difficult and grade-appropriate reading levels. If they’re wanting a book at a more difficult level, make some time in your day to allow yourself to read aloud to them. Shared story time is connection time.
Libraries throughout the Lower Mainland offer a Summer Reading Club. This free literacy program is designed to help school-aged children, ages 5-14, read throughout the summer. It is fun, educational, inclusive and community oriented. Head into your library branch to get your reading record, stickers, and calendar. Keep track of each day that you read. Read books, magazines, eBooks, or listen to audiobooks. Read in any language and read things that you enjoy. Read by yourself or have someone read with you.
Check out the participating libraries, get your child their own library card (it’s free!) and sign them up for some summer reading fun:
- Burnaby Public Library
- Coquitlam Public Library
- Fraser Valley Regional Libraries
- New Westminster Public Library
- North Vancouver City Library
- North Vancouver District Public Library
- Port Moody Public Library
- Richmond Public Library
- Surrey Public Library
- Vancouver Public Library
- West Vancouver Memorial Library