Summer vacation has arrived for many students and their families. Between summer camps, trips around the country, and enjoying the warm weather, keeping up with academics can be easily forgotten. The consequences of falling behind on school work last much longer than the weeks of summer vacation. According to a RAND Corporation report, “the average summer learning loss in math and reading for American students is equivalent to one month per year.” This loss increases for students who have limited access to reading and math materials while out of school.
Summertime is a great opportunity for rest and relaxation, but it’s also a great time for children to get ahead (or, at least, keep up) in school. Spending a few hours a week engaging in reading activities and lessons will help overcome the chances of summer reading loss. Here are some fun and interactive resources for children to keep up with their reading skills over the summer.
Perfect for families with children 3-11, Oxford Owl is a platform mostly dedicated to parents, offering tips and fun ideas on how to interact with their children through reading and math activities. Unlike other sites, Oxford Owl has 250 eBooks available for download. The Kid’s Barn page has educational activities featuring the main characters from each of their eBook series.
A special feature of Oxford Owl is the Expert Help section, which is designed especially for struggling readers and their parents. Users can access how-to videos, encouragement for writing and reading, and e-Safety tips on this page.
K12Reader offers a wide variety of reading instruction resources for children in kindergarten up to twelfth grade. Organized by spelling, reading skills, grammar, vocabulary, and composition, each category offers supplemental resources and worksheets available for download and printing. The resources are easy to access by searching the grade, reading level, or type of material. In addition to worksheets, K12Reader also offers summer reading lists, blogs, and articles for children to access on their eReaders or at the library.
IXL Learning has interactive online activities and games for pre-K up to twelfth grade. Unlike K12Reader, IXL Learning offers resources for traditional school subjects like math, language arts, science, and social studies. Another benefit to IXL users is the tracking system. Once logged into the system, IXL tracks scores and increases the difficulty of questions as improvement is made.
Partnered with the International Literacy Association and the National Council of Teachers of English, ReadWriteThink offers reading and language arts resources for grades kindergarten through twelfth grade. ReadWriteThink offers both interactive resources and printable materials and is easily searchable by grade level. Materials are categorized under Games & Tools, Printouts, Tips & How-To’s, and Podcasts.
Engaging your imagination is one of the best and most important parts of reading. Storyline Online posts recordings of authors reading their favorite children’s books. Each video recording shows pictures from the selected book along with an activity guide available for download. When children need a break from worksheets and online activities, Storyline is a great resource to have.
Remember, summer is a time of enjoyment! Losing a whole month of reading skills is no way to enjoy the summer. These resources are just as much fun as they are educational. With just a few lessons a week, children will be able to enter into the new school year with confidence.
Erin Navaro, an Ohio native, is a young professional who works with older adults, supporting them in every stage of their care. Curious about the world, Erin has lived and worked in Tanzania and India, finding inspiration from the people and cultures that have hosted her along the way. To see what’s next, connect with her on LinkedIn.