By now local school districts are officially out for summer. Congratulations, everyone, for making it through another year! I know that many people are teaching summer school or are taking classes, but I hope you all have a few days to simply relax and recharge.
As you plan the summer, don’t forget to include time for reading for you and for any children in your life! In the midst of a stressful school year it can be easy for us to forget about reading for our own pleasure. However, as literacy educators it is essential that we nurture our own reading life. For me, that means that I try to read a mixture of fun genre fiction (mostly mysteries and science fiction/fantasy), professional literature, and something that provides a bit of a challenge to my reading world. During the school year I tend to focus on professional literature; in the summer fun genre reading dominates my booklist. Right now, my reading challenge includes exploring graphic novels, a book format that I’m not deeply familiar with, and reading more nonfiction, a genre that I usually don’t choose to read.
The children in your life also need to be reading this summer! Make it fun–it doesn’t really matter if they’re reading comic books or 300 page novels as long as they’re enjoying the experience. And don’t turn their reading time into testing time. Nothing kills a child’s joy in reading faster than having to recite plot lines and the names of main characters.
Check out your public library for their summer reading programs. In our area a few of the summer programs include: