A 1996 study by Dr. Harris Cooper with the University of Missouri found that over summer break students can lose up to three months of learning, primarily in math, but also in reading. One tip he suggests to help students retain learning is to keep plenty of books around and schedule regular trips to the library.
Here are suggestions on what to read, great places to get books, and information on the upcoming summer reading programs offered through the King County Libraries.
Summer reading programs at the
Cecilia McGowan, coordinator of children’s services for the King County Library Systems, is excited about the upcoming summer reading programs for kids and teens around King County.
One World, Many Stories is the theme of the 2011 Summer Reading program for kids, which runs from June 13 to Aug. 31.
“Children may register for the Summer Reading Program online or visit their local library starting June 13 and pick up a Summer Reading Log and start reading to earn prizes," McGowan said. "At 500 minutes they earn a halfway prize and at 1,000 minutes they earn the finishers prize."
School-age readers who finish by Aug. 31 can enter a drawing for a free laptop, McGowan said, and preschool readers who finish by that time will be entered to win a family fun pass to the Woodland Park Zoo or a family membership to the .
More information on all summer reading programs is available on the King County Library Systems website.
Where to locate great summer reading choices
in , and have sections for infants to teens. Ask the store staff to help you find choices based on what your child currently likes to read, his or her interests and reading level. You can also find books for infants to teens at , and .
Recommended summer reading lists
A great way to start preparing for summer vacation is by going online to the King County Library system website this month and putting holds on the library books you and your kids want to read this summer. Using your library card and password, you can put holds on any book in the system and then have your selections ready for pick up at your favorite KCLS branch. And if your child is ready for the responsibility, celebrate the start of summer vacation by asking a librarian to help sign him or her up for his or her very own library card.
Beth Rosania, the children’s section supervisor for Bellevue's three King County Library System branches in , and inside , recommends the following books as great summer reads:
Baby Bear, Baby Bear What Do You See? Bill Martin, Jr. (series); Peek-a-Who? Nina Laden,Princess Baby, Karen Katz (series); Quiet Loud, Leslie Patricelli (She also has others in the series—Big Little, Binky, etc.); and Sporty Babies Wear Sweats, Michelle Sinclair Colman (series)
Interrupting Chicken, David Ezra Stein; Knuffle Bunny Free, Mo Willems (series); The Loud Book, Deborah Underwood (sequel to The Quiet Book); Silverlicious, Victoria Kahn (Latest in the Pinkilicious series); and Skippyjon Jones Prest-O-Change-O, Judy Schachner (series).
For beginning readers/early chapter books (grades K-2)
DK Readers (series); Henry and Mudge, Mr. Putter and Tabby, Poppleton—several series by Cynthia Rylant; I Broke My Trunk (An Elephant and Piggie Book); Mo Willems (series); and Magic Tree House: Summer of the Sea Serpent, Mary Pope Osborne (series)
For grades 3-6
Close to Famous, Joan Bauer; Emerald Atlas, John Stephens; The Hidden Gallery (Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place Book 2); Maryrose Wood, The Lemonade Crime, Jacqueline Davies (sequel to Lemonade War); Penderwicks at Point Mouette, Jeanne Birdsall (series); and Turtle in Paradise, Jennifer Holm
For teens and tweens
Inheritance, Christopher Paolini (part of the Inheritance Cycle); Last Little Blue Envelope, Maureen Johnson (follow-up to 13 Little Blue Envelopes); Throne of Fire (Kane Chronicles #2), Rick Riordan; Where She Went, Gayle Foreman (sequel to If I Stay); and Witch and Wizard, James Patterson
10 Habits of Happy Mothers: Reclaiming Our Passion, Purpose, and Sanity, Meg Meeker; Cinderella Ate My Daughter: Dispatches from the Front Lines of the New Girlie-Girl Culture, Peggy Orenstein; Getting to Calm: Cool-Headed Strategies for Parenting Tweens & Teens, Laura Kastner; Mom’s Book of Lists: 100 Practical Lists for Raising Your Kids, Alice Wong; and Raising Happiness, 10 Simple Steps for More Joyful Kids & Happier Parents, Christine Carter.
Beach, Park and Pool Reads for Mom
I’ll Walk Alone, Mary Higgins Clark; Night Road, Kristin Hannah; The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels—A Love Story, Ree Drummond; The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie, Alan Bradbury; and A Turn in the Road, Debbie Macomber
The staff at the magical children’s bookstore Mockingbird Books and Cafe, located near Greenlake in Seattle, recommends the following books for enjoyable family reading all summer long:
This Little Chick, John Lawrence; I Swing Like a Monkey, Harriet Ziefert; What Do You See?, Martine Perrin; Who's in the Garden?, Phyllis Gershator; and Tubby, Leslie Patricelli
Little Blue Truck, Alice Schertle; Otis, Loren Long; I’m the Biggest Thing in the Ocean, Kevin Sherry; Baby Danced the Polka, Karen Beaumont; and Roadwork, Sally Sutton
For 4- and 5-year-olds
Monkey With a Toolbelt, Chris Monroe; Small Saul, Ashley Spires; Chicken Butt, Erica Perl; Hatch, Roxie Munro; Hooray for Amanda & Her Alligator, Mo Willems; Miss Lina’s Ballerina, Grace Maccarone; and To Market To Market, Nikki McClure
For elementary schoolers
This Plus That, Amy Rosenthal; Butterfly is Patient, Diannna Hutts Aston; Book Three of the Penderwicks series - Penderwicks at Point Mouette, Jeanne Birdall; Young Fredle, Cynthia Voigt and; Keepers School series and We the Children – Book 1, Andrew Clements
Out of My Mind, Sharon Draper; Okay for Now, Gary Schmidt; Dark Life, Kat Falls; Smile, Raina Telgemeier; and Kane Chronicles Book 2 – Throne of Fire, Rick Riordan
Dirt Road Home, Watt Key; Shipbreaker, Paolo Bacigalupi; Blink and Caution, Tim Wynne-Jones; New Heist Society series, Book 2 - Uncommon Criminals, Ally Carter; and New Dairy Queen series book - Front and Center, Catherine Gilbert Murdock