Reading Tips For Parents & Educators

Find expert reading strategies and useful tips to help introduce children to the wonderful world of reading on their own with I Can Read!

10 Tips to Avoid the Summer Reading Slide

For kids, summer vacation is one of the most highly anticipated times of the year. It comes with longer days, less structure, and plenty of excuses for cold treats. After a school year of remote learning and inevitable challenges, they (and you!) deserve a break. But, the summer reading slide is real. That’s why we gathered 10 tips to help your kids stay on track this off-season and avoid the summer reading slide:

1. Read aloud to them

Set aside 15 to 30 minutes a day to read together with your little one. This can be built into their bedtime routine or happen at any other point throughout the day.

2. Visit the library

Carve out time to visit your local library, or if you’re traveling, a new library! Find the early reader section and let your child choose their own books to check out. Most libraries offer scheduled storytimes and events, too.

3. Have them read aloud to you

Grab your early reader and have them read aloud to you. If they aren’t reading on their own yet, pause when you are reading a story to let them read sight words or identify certain letters.

4. Play word games

Rhyming can help build phonemic awareness and fluency at any age. Choose a word and see how many words you can rhyme with it. If you’re playing with older kids, take turns crafting a story with rhyming words at the end of each sentence and see how long you can go!

5. Be selective about screen time

Screen time choices can feel overwhelming and are still relatively new. Narrow them down by choosing a show that helps teach early literacy skills. For younger viewers, “Sesame Street” continues to be a great choice. Other popular options are “Super Why,” “The Electric Company,” and “Word Girl.”

6. Schedule virtual storytimes with relatives

If COVID-19 has taught us anything, it’s the power of keeping in touch with friends and family who may not live nearby. Encourage relatives to choose a story to read aloud to your kids over FaceTime or Zoom, grab some ice cream, and make a night out of it!

7. Start a book club with a friend

Find a fellow book lover and choose an early literacy book to read aloud with your kids. The next time your child meets up with that friend, ask them both a few questions about the story and start a conversation around it.

8. Give them paper and a pencil

Leave out lined paper or a blank comic book with some colored pencils and see what your kids create. You can also ask for help writing out your grocery or to-do list to encourage them to practice their penmanship.

9. Let them read to themselves

Place exciting, easy-to-follow books around the house for your kids to pick up. These can be wordless picture walks or leveled readers –– whichever you think will spark their interest the most!

10. Model reading

Let them see you reading and relaxing on your own. When you can, put down your phone and pick up a good book. After all, you’re their #1 role model.

Looking for more ways to avoid the summer reading slide? Check out our monthly book club for kids and get awesome children’s books delivered to your door.