A little summer reading

Image by Stuart Miles / FreeRangeStock.com

My daughter's kindergarten experience was so much more serious than mine was.
Back then, in the mid-1970s, kindergarten was just half a day that included a nap. The only things we learned -- identifying colors, shapes, numbers and letters -- were things most of us probably already knew. Learning to read started in first grade. 

That was not the case for my little girl. For her, kindergarten was a flurry of sight words, letter sounds, "blends," identifying coins and patterns, and so on. She learned a lot between last August and mid-May.

My goals now that summer vacation has begun: Make her read often so that she doesn't forget everything before school starts again. And don't make reading not fun for her.

Keeping it fun will not be easy. Even though she can read far better than I could at her age, she still has to sound out most words she comes across. When reading a typical children's book, she will sound out the first words she doesn't know without prompting, but by the time she gets to the twentieth word she has to sound out, she gets tired and frustrated and just starts guessing.

Thankfully, most public libraries have summer programs designed to encourage kids to keep reading during the summer. This week, I got her registered for the program at our local library and let her check out a couple more books. The library clerk who checked us out said she'd get prizes as she reads books. Right now, she's raring to go and get the prizes.

Hopefully, she is still that eager to read at the end of the year.

What do you do to keep your child reading in the summer? Please share in the comments section.

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