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Resources for Summer Reading Projects and Programs

Research has shown that students lose a significant amount of skills over the three-month period of time that makes up summer break. One of the best ways to negate this brain drain is to assign and discuss summer reading projects. Education World has compiled a list of free resources to use and discuss as potential summer reading projects for your classroom before the final bell rings.

1. Summer Reading with Barnes and Noble

Barnes and Noble is historically a great resource for summer reading programs year after year. This year, the bookstore is offering a free book to students who chose to do their Reading Journal Challenge. To participate, students will download and print the Barnes and Noble reading journal and use it to record a minimum of eight book.s Upon completion, the student can then bring the journal into a local B&N stores and chose any book from the Reading Journal list for free.

Barnes and Noble additionally offers suggested reading lists for students across all grade levels. Check out both the Reading Journal challenge and the list of suggested books here.

2. Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge

Scholastic is looking to set a new reading world record for this summer through its free online summer reading program.

The program includes resources for kids, educators, and parents alike. For kids, the program works by having them log the minutes they spend reading and provides incentive by having certain logged hours unlock stories and rewards.

For parents and educators, Scholastic offers free book lists to let students use to select books throughout the summer months.

3. Sylvan Reading Book Adventure

By registering your students/children for this free summer reading program, students in grades K-8 will be able to search for books, read them, and then answer quizzes about the book to earn prizes. The program runs all year round, but most educators report finding it most useful for kids during the long summer months.

4. Government-Sponsored Summer Reading Programs

Many state governments will sponsor summer reading programs to be implemented in public libraries. As educators, let students and parents know about what specific programs your state has made available at the public library. A good example is Texas', which provides materials to libraries throughout the state to get them ready to host summer reading programs.

Promoting these state-sponsored library programs is also a good way to encourage students to register for library cards.

5. Showcase Cinema's Bookworm Wednesdays

In the month of July (July 8th-July 29th), Showcase Cinema provides free movie showings every Wednesday per those weeks for children that come with a book report. In other words, a book report is a movie ticket to summer movies like Rio 2 and the Annie reboot. See locations and specific rules here

And ...

Don't forget about yourself! Summer break means a lot of down time for teachers as well. Use this list of summer reading suggestions compiled by teachers, for teachers. 

Compiled by Nicole Gorman, Education World Contributor

05/11/2015