What could be better for a student's literacy skills than a summer
filled with reading of all kinds? As Cathy Beck et. al explain, "With
the time pressures of a regular school year behind us and the new year
not quite a reality, we can dust off the books that have waited
patiently to give us pleasure and without guilt, immerse ourselves in
one of life’s greatest pleasures—reading" (Books for Summer Reading,
p. 321). Summer reading programs urge students to read during their
summer vacations, developing and maintaining a lifelong habit of
reading for pleasure. Further, such programs help students retain and
sharpen literacy skills during the months that they are out of the
What Happened Today?
The ReadWriteThink calendar is one rich source
of summer learning opportunities. Information on the national spelling
bee, the birthdays of poets Gwendolyn Brooks and Nikki Giovanni, the
history of the dragon boat festival in China, all with accompanying
activities and reading, are just a few of the resources.
Summer Program Assists At-Risk High School Students
A summer job with a high school literacy project
for at-risk students helped Katherine Barr teach content reading and
writing strategies, strategies that she intends to combine, next time,
with reading and writing workshop. From English Journal, July 2001.
Bilingual Playwriting in a Summer School Program
A summer program presented the possibility of
transforming Eurocentric curriculum into one centered on the familial,
social, cultural, and linguistic cultures of students, in this article
from May 2001 Language Arts.
Bold Books for Teenagers
This article from the May 2007 issue of English Journal highlights literature for young adolescents.
Leaving No Reader Behind
This article from May 2007 Voices from the Middle discusses tips for reluctant adolescent readers.
Books for Summer Reading
This article from the April 1998 issue of Language Arts describes what fifth-grade students read in the summer and why and includes descriptions of forty books.
ReadWriteThink Summer Activities
Visit ReadWriteThink's Summer Activities: Learning Beyond the Classroom
site. Children and teens can stay immersed in learning by reading and
writing all summer long through engaging activities and fun online
games and tools. Listen to podcasts of booktalks and watch video
demonstrations of learning activities to make the most of summer
reading and writing opportunities.
Read Together: Parents and Educators Working Together for Literacy
From the NCTE Reading Commission and available both as a position statement
and as a poster w/ accompanying brochures. Provides valuable
information for anyone who reads with young children, including book
lists for different developmental reading levels.
2009 Orbis Pictus Award Winners
Amelia Earhart: The Legend of the Lost Aviator by
Shelley Tanaka, illustrated by David Craig, leads the list of 2009 Orbis Pictus Award winning nonfiction titles.