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Easy Ways to Get Kids Reading This Summer – Part 2

#1 was Make It Fun! Last week, we made suggestions on how to engage younger audiences through challenges and rewards, with summer reading. Remember, this is their journey and they need to make the commitment to follow it through. If they are not engaged and excited, to be part of the process, you may want to revisit the planning and get more input from them. This week, we are going to share different ways to make the process more exciting.

#2 – Change it up! Once you have a plan of what you are going to do, think about the delivery of that plan. What works best for your readers? Is reading time a scheduled event or does it happen when you get time? Is it a family event, or a solitary moment? Have you ever made “reading” an “event”? There are many ways to freshen up an old past-time. Check out these ideas:

  • Get a Readers’ Advisory list of recommended reads from your library or try what other kids are reading. Searching for the next great read can be as much fun as the book itself.
  • Graphic novels have more illustrations and come in a variety of reading levels. These are great for creative minds that are easily distracted or hesitant readers, as the pictures help keep the reader engaged. Non-Fiction (true stories) are another alternative. Why not read about a topic of interest. You will find that non-fiction books are much more visually appealing, than the text-heavy books they used to be.
  • Try the online library. Borrow something that is available and put a hold on a book that is unavailable. It is very exciting to get notified that a new book is now available for pick-up. If your young readers have never used an electronic device to read, it may appeal to them, just as streaming, or a DVD, is a little more interesting than watching a TV movie.
  • Try audio books. Whether you borrow discs from the library or download an audio file, it is a unique experience to be able to hear a story, and do something creative, while you listen. Many build LEGO scenes or draw/paint a picture from the stories they are hearing.
  • Try InterLibrary Loan. Libraries are able to borrow from other libraries in Ontario. As library budgets and buildings confine the number of books each library can stock, we do have the option of borrowing from each other to keep our collections exciting.
  • Make it an event – pick a topic, read the book, and then watch the movie. There are lots of opportunities to choose from and it is a great opportunity to make it a family affair.
  • Create a reading nook – a special place, that is free from distraction, cozy, climate controlled, and fill it with comfort items such as a pillow, blanket, and beverage shelf. Don’t forget to make room for your fur-buddy, if you enjoy their company.

Next week we finish with #3 – Finding and Sharing your Next Great Read!

Submitted by Paige Turner