Why Read Over the Summer?

Kids are often encouraged by their teachers to read over the summer, but did you ever wonder why? The book The Power of Reading by Stephen Krashen provides all kinds of fascinating information about the benefits of reading. For example, did you know, studies have shown:

Kids who read just five books over the summer had a 3% gain in reading comprehension test scores


Summer reading improves writing, spelling, vocabulary and grammar — in fact, it is better than direct instruction at improving these skills!

What if your child “hates” reading?

Read TO her! Even as your kids get older, read aloud to them as often as possible. Children who are read to read more and show better literacy development. Even college students read more and better books when they are read to.

Let your child see you reading. Children read more when they see other people reading.

Allow your child to read what he wants to read, whether it is comic books (comic book texts can be complex), factual nonfiction books, magazines, or books that are “too young” for him. If a child enjoys reading, he will move on to more difficult books. Audiobooks are another good option. A child can either follow along with a book or simply enjoy having a book read aloud to her by a fantastic narrator. Listening to audiobooks improves all of the same literacy skills as reading a book, with the exception of spelling.

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Written by Susan


Susan is the Youth Services Specialist at the Plainfield Branch. She loves mysteries, children’s chapter books, and teen fiction. When she’s not doing storytime, she can be found bicycling, scrapbooking, or enjoying her husband, children, and spoiled Jack Russell terror…er, terrier.

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