by Jennifer LaGarde, Digital Teaching and Learning Specialist and Lead School Library Media Coordinator
Research has shown that when students read over the summer, they come back to school better prepared for the challenges of a new school year. In fact, reading just five books during summer break can altogether prevent the “summer slide,” (or a regression of reading ability over the summer months).1 The US Department of Education recommends the following tips for helping students maintain healthy reading lives over the summer:
1. Let your child choose what they want to read – or be read to – for 30 minutes each day. Children are much more likely to engage in material that interests them rather than materials that are forced on them.
2. Use language and reading opportunities throughout the day. Talk often with your child and point out reading materials wherever possible: on menus, magazines and newspapers, signs, brochures, maps, guidebooks, smartphones, ipads, etc.
3. Make daily reading a social event. Get the whole family to join in with their own books or take turns reading the same book aloud. Include telling stories as well.
4. Connect reading to other summer events. If you take your child to the zoo, think about reading a book about animals before and afterward. This will place your child’s reading within a larger context.
5. Make reading a lifestyle choice. Keep books all around the house to cultivate an atmosphere of reading, and set an example by reading yourself. Children need good models of reading books, magazines, or newspapers.
New Hanover County Schools will host summer library programs at eleven sites this summer (beginning Monday, June 27, 2016 and ending on Thursday, August 4, 2016) to help parents engage their NHCS students in these types of reading activities.
ANY NHCS student will be allowed to participate in any program and checkout/return materials at any of the participating locations. In addition to checking out reading materials, each location will host a variety of activities including:
● coding and robotics
● reading with canine service animals
● Lego MakerSpaces
● exploring the wizarding ways of Harry Potter by playing a game of Table Quidditch
● 3-D Printing
● NHCPL Book Talks with “Miss Margaret”
● Lots, lots more!
Please visit the NHCS Summer Reading Program website for a complete schedule and calendar of events. We look forward to seeing you there!
1 “Top 5 Ways to Prevent Rusty Summer Readers” United We Serve. The White House. n.d. Web.