Summer is a time for families to take a break from the structure of school and the academic rigor that comes along with it. But it’s not a time for kids to take a break from learning! Studies show that some students can lose up to two months of reading achievement over the summer months.
Participating in a reading program is a great way for kids to continue to challenge their brains in a fun, laid back way. When it comes to choosing a summer program, there are many options. Here are a few to consider – find the best match for your student and get reading!
Beginning May 16 through August 15, readers can register for the Summer Challenge. This popular program had 3,808 children, 1,130 teens and 2,183 adults participate last year. Read or listen to books, complete activities and then log achievements to earn points. Prizes are earned at 25, 50, 75 and 100 points, but more points can be achieved by becoming a “Bicentennial Reader” at 200 points. Bicentennial Readers can be entered into a special drawing for a chance to win tickets to sporting events and other local community activities.
Hamilton East Public Library
Noblesville and Fishers locations
This year the Hamilton East Public Library is proud to launch “Summer Under the Stars: Celebrating 200 Summers in Indiana” from June 1-July 31. The library is celebrating the State of Indiana’s Bicentennial with events, contests and more. A variety of prizes for reading and listening to books are given throughout the program, each provided by local businesses as well as the Friends of the Library. This year, a special passport has been developed by the staff at Visit Hamilton County to connect readers to libraries and other activities in the area.
Hamilton North Public Library
Cicero and Atlanta
This year’s summer reading program is themed “Fitness/Wellness” with three participant category slogans: “On Your Mark, Get Set, Read” for the pre-K through 5th grade set, “Get in the Game” for teens and young adults, and “Exercise Your Mind, Read” for adults. The program kicks off June 2 and continues through July 20. Weekly themes throughout the summer will include gardening, nutrition, fitness and Olympic sports. On June 15, the popular Professor Steve will talk on the “Science of Basketball.” At the end of the summer, a private pool party for participants who have completed the program will take place Friday, July 15.
Kicking off June 9, the Westfield Washington Public Library summer reading programs continue through July 31. The library focuses on the whole family to inspire readers of all ages. Each program rewards readers with prizes for how many hours and books they’ve read during the program. Prizes are drawn from local businesses in the community.
Barnes & Noble stores
Noblesville and Carmel locations
Barnes & Noble stores across the country will launch an Olympic themed summer reading program. Kids can pick up a summer reading journal at any Barnes & Noble to jot down the books they’ve read. After eight books, children can pick a free book from a select list of titles listed on the back of their journal.
Half Price Books
Clearwater Village, E. 82 Street
“Feed Your Brain” is the name of Half Price Books summer reading program – one for kids in grades 8 and under, and the other for teens. The younger crowd is encouraged to read for at least 15 minutes each day for a month. Once a child hits 300 minutes, he can receive a $5 coupon toward their next purchase. High school students are encouraged to read at least one book per month in June and July and write a short review for a $5 coupon. The program also encourages families to set up their own reward system, with suggestions like a visit to a zoo, amusement park or a special lunch out. The programs run June 1 through July 31.
Online Summer Reading Programs
On this site, popular children’s books are read out loud by celebrities and kids can follow along with the graphics and/or their own book in front of them. This resource can add a little variety to your child’s summer reading program.
This program is especially good for beginning readers. Preschoolers can learn letter recognition and sounds and have stories read to them. The stories and activities are fun, unique and interactive and will motivate your little reader to keep at it this summer.
Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge
Kids of all ages are encouraged to become a “Reading Superhero” this summer. Starting May 9, kids can log the minutes they read, learn about their favorite authors and be entered into sweepstakes to earn prizes from Klutz Press.
Whether you decide to get involved with the library, a bookstore or choose a program online, any method that gets your children excited about reading this summer is the plan that works for you!