Over the long summer break, students can lose weeks of learning from the previous school year. But there are ways to keep kids engaged with reading and writing.
Iowa State University's Emily Hayden, an assistant professor of literacy education, says the key is to make these activities not feel like school. Instead, parents should think outside the box and capitalize on a child’s interests.
For example, if your kid likes being outside, get them a "science" notebook.
"Get a little notebook, doesn't have to be fancy," she says, "and you read and your write in the way that scientists. So scientists observe something, something in the yard. Something growing. Some kind of bug. They make drawings of whatever it is. They label whatever it is."
When finding reading materials, Hayden says parents will see more success if they let their child pick what they want to read. And any type of reading counts.
"Reading instructional manuals, reading recipe books, reading directions for doing something. All of that is reading," says Hayden. "Eyes on text, time on text, no matter what kind of text. It’s always going to help students."