Prevent the “Summer Slide” with Fun Reading Programs!


It’s no secret that I love reading. I keep up with my reading stats in the same manner that a sport fanatic keep up with the stats of their favorite team or player. Currently, they are:

Books Read this Year: 36

Reading Streak: 118 Weeks in a Row

I could provide more riveting stats, but that isn’t what this article is about. It’s about preventing the dreaded “Summer Slide.” The Summer Slide is when you see a decline in a child’s reading ability during the summer when school is not in session. While I’ve never experienced the “Summer Slide” myself, I have witnessed it in my own children. And you won’t notice the Summer Slide until it’s too late. For my kids, it was the struggle to find the main idea of a text that their teacher required them to read. The ability to read something and be able to explain what they’ve read went from sharp to very, very dull. The first month of school was spent “getting back into the hang of learning.” Well, what if they never stopped learning???

Even though I still believe summer is a time for hours and hours of free play outdoors, I still making sure that we keep up on our reading skills this summer.  One fun and rewarding way to do that is through the many summer reading programs throughout the city.

reading quote by Roald Dahl

Summer reading programs are great because not only do they encourage kids to read more, but they reward reading with fun activities and prizes.  The more your kid reads, the more prizes they earn!

  • Summer Reading Programs at Memphis Public Libraries:  An “Oceans of Possibilities” officially begins June 1st and runs until July 31st. Many of the Memphis Public Library Branches will be hosting a kickoff celebration on June 4th, so be sure to check out your local branch for more details. But the Memphis Public Library doesn’t just want to get the kids started reading this summer, they aim to keep them reading. There are a plethora of events scheduled this summer to keep all types of kids, from early childhood all the way to the adults, engaged and having fun. The Memphis Public Library will be utilizing BeanStack to allow readers to track reading stats and progress. There will be weekly prize drawings as well as a Grand Prize Drawing.
  • Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge:  Are you traveling a lot this summer and won’t be in town to bring your reading logs to the library or bookstore?  Maybe your kid is more into video games and loves animated material? The summer reading program through Scholastic Summer Reading: Homebase is the perfect solution for you because the program is completely online, animated, and fun. Kids and parents create an account and log reading time through the Scholastic website.  My kids started using Scholastic Homebase last summer and haven’t stopped.
  • Book It at Pizza Hut:  Yes! Book It is still around!  The reading program that anyone who went to elementary school in the 80s and 90s took part in is still encouraging young readers to progress in their literacy skills.   It happens to be the longest running reading program ever! Camp BOOK IT! runs from June to August for PreK-6th grade students (ages 4-12).

If you child is still fighting you tooth and nail to read, check out these tips for Reluctant Readers!

Like to read books to your children? Check out our amazing list of Books to Read Aloud with Your {Big} Kids.

Think your child needs professional intervention? We recommend trying GoPeer, an online tutoring service for kids of all ages.


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Patricia is a Memphis native and LOVES Memphis to her core. She is the mom of 4 kids, Aiden (June 2008), Elliott and Elijah (January 2012), and Eve (November (2013). *Please ignore the lack of an age gap between the twins and Eve…things happen. Patricia is the wife of a tall, dark, and handsome man, Anthony. She graduate from the University of Memphis in 2007 and 2010, with a Bachelors degree in Exercise and Sports Science and a Masters Degree in Arts in Teaching. She earned her Library Endorsement from the University of Knoxville (hooray for online education.) Patricia is a school librarian and a blog writer, She loves to read, write, read, cook, read, run, read, travel, read, and hang out with Memphis. Yes, you read that right, she likes to hang out with the entire city. Life has dealt Patricia a series of highs, lows, and “why-me” moments, but you will never catch her without a smile in eyes, ignited from her soul within.



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