Bedtime reading is a staple at our house, but in the summer everything gets all out of whack. The only thing really consistent during the summer is that nothing is consistent! If we expect our kids to read daily (and yes, we do) we have to do a little work to make it easy for them to accomplish their reading goals, even during the summer. Here are 10 tips to make summer reading at bedtime easier to keep up and maintain a routine.
1. Keep bedtimes the same as during the school year, but let your little bookworms stay up 30 minutes later to read.
2. Ditch the lamp and grab a headlamp! You don't have to be camping to feel like you are on an adventure with books.
3. Before summer starts, make a bedtime book basket and pop in a few new books to get them excited about reading every night.
4. Balance the use of eReaders and traditional books. Screen time right before sleep can be a roadblock to restful sleep for some kids. These are great for nights when they don't have to be up early the next day.
5. Take turns being the bedtime reader. My kids love to read to each other, and while this might be too much excitement for a school night, summer is a perfect time to have a little more fun before bed!
6. While on vacation have a book sent ahead so it's waiting for your reader. If you are going to grandma's or the beach or even a cruise, you can order a book online and have it waiting when you arrive. Kids love getting packages, and this one will be unexpected and special.
7. Read series, but the trick is to have the next book ready and waiting! This can be hard if you are using library books, but if you start planning now you can reserve a few books in a series for when you need them.
8. Remember that magazines make great bedtime reading, too.
9. Go with a theme! A fun way to get kids excited about reading is to match it to a theme. One thing I am excited to try this summer is to match our bedtime reading to my son's summer camp schedule. One week will be science books to go with science camp, basketball books to go with basketball camp, etc…
10. Sneak them into their camp luggage! Just because they are at camp doesn't mean they won't have time to read. One of my fondest memories of camp was reading to my bunkmates long after dark!
How do you keep your kids reading at bedtime during the chaotic summer months? Tell us about it on the Scholastic Parents Facebook page.