This the third and final post of a summer reading series written by literacy consultant Patty McGee.
Every summer, I create a plan for myself to complete all the things I was not able to do during the school year– organize closets, read all of the books I have wanted to pick up, garden, exercise, etc. I usually start off strong with all of these but by mid July, I no longer feel the draw to be so ambitious. This may happen with students as well, especially for those who do not find reading a joy. We can still support our students by staying in touch over the summer to keep that reading spark alive.
Connect Virtually: One favorite way to stay connected all summer is through social media (in a safe, controlled setting of course). Many teachers keep their Kidblog accounts up and running asking students to weigh in on their latest read and comment on classmates reads. Tweeting to parents about books, reading, lovely inspiring quotes for readers, or a quick photo or memory of reading during the school year is another simple way to connect just a few times a week. Summer email blasts can be pre-written and then sent out periodically as well.
Summer Meet-ups: Readers can also connect face to face by starting a summer book club (or continuing a book club they were already part of that year). Maybe there is a new popular book release (this summer: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Parts I & II out July 31st) and a reason to get together at school or the local library to celebrate! A summer book swap is also a way to connect to share favorite books and pass them along to others to keep reading going.
Partner with the Town Library: Town libraries are so often eager to connect with readers at all times during the year, but especially in the summer. My local library has many events geared to welcome students into the library as often as possible. They often look to take the reins from some of the reading projects and supports (i.e. keep a book club going). Often there is a librarian just for young readers who is looking for ways to connect with even more young readers.
With all of these tips in this blog series in your back pocket, your students are well on their way to a summer filled with good books. Our wish is that you take the summer to replenish your teaching soul through rest, learning, and some really great reads! Happy summer!
Check out the other posts in this series:
Part 1: End the Year By Kicking Off Summer Reading Plans
Part 2: Encourage Kids to Read Far and Wide This Summer