Disclosure: Thanks to Scholastic for encouraging my family this Summer with some Adventure reading. Even though this is a sponsored post, all opinions are mine.

With Summer break back in full force our kids are looking for ways to escape anything that looks school related. It seems that both of our girls are dead set on avoiding their Summer reading list and math memory work. Do you have this obstacle every Summer? We do, sometimes!

Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge

Nobody Said You Can’t Read with Your Kids

So to shake it for both the kids and me I am going to start reading with them more. Not to monitor, but more to spend quality time together while reading.

  • Time with you. By keeping your bedtime routine alive, you and your child get to do something new together — cheer for the good guys and boo the bad ones in the books you read. You also get a peek into how your child sees the world through the comments she makes on the plot, the characters, and the setting. “Because you enter her world through the safe avenue of a third party — a character — you’ll have more insight than you ever would by asking ‘So, how’s life?’ ” says Michelle Anthony, Ph.D., a child psychologist in Denver. And, who knows, you may even find you have opinions in common!
  • Stronger reading skills. As kids reach the upper-elementary grades, reading demands increase, yet one-on-one reading instruction for competent readers doesn’t. Listening to you read more advanced books shows her strategies that will help her at school. You read aloud with expression. You pause for punctuation. You raise and lower your voice in tune with the action. You speed up or slow down to indicate the degree of tension in the text.
  • New perspectives. Reading aloud with children, especially fourth and fifth-graders, teaches them to analyze and reflect on the text, says Krista Granieri, an adjunct literacy professor at Dowling College in Oakdale, NY, who also teaches elementary school special education classes. When reading to her students, Granieri thinks out loud — commenting on how the text may add to the child’s knowledge of the topic. For example, if you were reading a book with your child about dogs, you might note, “A Pomeranian, just like Aunt Elaine’s dog! But Princess is tan. I didn’t know there were black ones.”
  • A headstart on the future. Kids who are already fluent readers can do something their snugglebunny sibs can’t: appreciate the author’s craft. If they hear good writing often enough, it develops their ear. They can’t help but replicate it in schoolwork.

Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge

Now in its 9th year, the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge is a free online reading program dedicated to stopping the “summer slide” by encouraging kids to read throughout the summer months when school is out. This year’s challenge theme is “Power Up & Read,” powered by ENERGIZER®.

  •  Why should kids read this summer?
    • Kids fall prey to the “summer slide,” the common loss of skills due to being out of school, when they do not read over the summer.
    • Research shows Teachers spend four to six weeks re-teaching materials to students because of the “summer slide”—the learning losses which can occur when school is not in session. (Alexander et. al, 2007)
    • Summer is the perfect time for a child to discover the power of choice. According to the Kids & Family Reading Report, 5th edition, 91% of kids (ages 6-17) say that their favorite books are the ones they pick out themselves.
  •  How does it work?
    • Starting May 4, 2015 – September 4, 2015, kids can log their reading minutes (online and via mobile) as they read to break last year’s world record of 304,749,861 minutes.
    • Parents can sign-up their kids at www.scholastic.com/summer. It’s FREE!
    • Kids can also enter monthly sweepstakes to win fabulous prizes, and earn digital rewards when they complete weekly reading challenges.
  •  What’s new this year for kids?
    • Kids can unlock 12 original short stories (exclusively for this year’s challenge) from favorite children’s authors and access never-before-seen videos from the authors! Each of the authors has written a unique short story using the same opening sentence, which is, “I glanced over my shoulder to make sure that no one had followed me into the shadowy library, then took a deep breath and opened the glowing book…”
  • Each story has a “read along” audio component, inviting kids of all ages and reading levels to enjoy these highly engaging stories.
  • The authors include Blue Balliett, Patrik Henry Bass, Varian Johnson, Gordon Korman, Michael Northtrop, Maggie Stiefvater and Jackson Pierce, Roland Smith, R.L. Stine, Tui T. Sutherland, Lauren Tarshis, Wendy Wan-Long Shang and Jude Watson.
    • They can play the new “innovation machine” game, an interactive creative writing game, and enter its contest to win prizes.
    • Kids can log minutes on-the-go to earn digital rewards and badges as they hit reading milestones.
  •  What’s new this year for parents?
    • The parents site features new, daily tips for parents called “The Daily Digest.”
    • Parents can enter weekly sweepstakes to win a “Power Up & Read Kit” and watch videos about summer reading activities to keep you “innovative” all summer long. The prize pack includes: Scholastic tote bag, water bottle, a copy of Reading Unbound by Jeffrey Wilhelm and Michael Smith, $10 gift certificate to Scholastic Store Online, Energizer® brand batteries, Scholastic books, and more.
    • Parents can download free resources, including printables and booklists for kids of all ages.

Jaci Reading

How Will You Help Break the Summer Reading Record

Are you on board? Can you commit to reading a few books a week? I think you can! Join with me and Scholastic Books to break the Summer reading record. Let me know in the comments below if you are up for the challenge!

Sign up for the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge

Resources from Scholastic Parents:

–          6 Tips for Taking Reading on the Road

–          Reading Checklist: What to Bring for Reading Adventures

–          Bring Books to Life: Take a Reading Field Trip

–          The Benefits and Pleasures of Listening to Audio Books

Find more Scholastic Resources to keep your kids reading all summer long!

Learn more about the Energizer® Instant Win Game

Follow @Scholastic on Twitter

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