Summer’s here and it’s time to make sure your kids are set with their summer reading booklists, goals and plans.  Here are some tips and resources to help you get going:

Scholastic Read-a-Palooza Summer Reading Challenge:  Once again, children’s book publisher Scholastic is offering a great summer reading program for children of all ages. After signing up on the Scholastic Read-a-Palooza site,  kids can enter their summer reading minutes online, unlock digital rewards as they complete weekly reading challenges; and access book excerpts, videos, and other summer-exclusive content.

And new for this summer, the Summer Reading Challenge Give Back: when all registered kids collectively reach designated minute milestones, Scholastic will make book donations nationwide through United Way to kids who have limited or no access to books.  What an inspired way to encourage kids to read for themselves and to help other kids get books!  The Challenge started in May and already more than 50 million minutes have been logged, which has unlocked two shipments of book donations to the United Way.  Scholastic has committed to donating at least 200,000 books this summer through this program.

It is not too late to join:  the challenge continues until September 13, 2019, and every minute from now until then counts.  Check out the Scholastic site with your children for more details, a great summer book list, and so much more.

The New York Public Library invites children to “Blast Off” into Summer Reading, with a great assortment of programs in the library branches.  If you live in in the NYC area, be sure to check out the information on their website, and check with your local public library to see what summer reading activities they offer.  Check with your local public library if you live outside of NYC as they are sure to offer summer reading programs as well.  Wherever you live, you and your children can use the great reading list included on the New York Public Library’s site.

Reading Rockets is a national public media literacy project which offers research-based reading strategies, lessons, and activities designed to help children learn how to read and read better. As you would expect, their site is chock full of information, tips and resources to help parents encourage summer reading. Be sure to check out the parent resources, which include Day Trips for Book Lovers and Reading Adventure Packs, in which sets of theme-based fiction and nonfiction books are paired with related interactive activities.  Parents can download the themed adventure pack (there are over 30 different themes!), add the books (buy them or get them from the library),  assemble everything into a two-gallon zip top bag, and you’re ready to hit the road, the beach, the park, the backyard, the stoop, wherever you are hanging out for family summer fun.

We all know (well, if you are already a GCP parent, you certainly know) that summer reading helps our children combat that dreaded summer slide—when they can lose up to three months of reading progress, and this loss has a cumulative long-term effect.  So let’s get July off to a good and productive start by encouraging summer reading fun!