The research is clear that children who don't read during the summer can lose up to three months of reading progress and that loss has a cumulative, long-term effect. The following resources and articles provide information about summer reading and summer learning loss. Plus you'll discover great activities to encourage kids to learn, read, and have fun in the summer sun. For all of our summer resources, browse Topics A-Z: Summer Reading.
Adventures in Summer Learning (Video)
In this episode of Launching Young Readers, learn how to create a literacy-rich summer for your kids. You'll also see profiles of summer programs for at-risk youth and children with learning disabilities.
Our Big Summer Read Booklists!
Our annual summer reading booklists make it easy to find great books kids will enjoy during the long, lazy days of summer. Fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and audiobooks for children 0-12 years old. Browse the 2019 Summer Booklist >
Start with a Book: Read, Talk, Explore
24 kid-friendly topics matched with great books, activities, and writing ideas, plus tips on reading aloud and building fluency. You'll find lots of STEM resources, including our 5-day Space Rangers and River Rangers programs.
What else you'll find here
- Summer Learning, Side-by-Side
Children are full of questions about the world around them, and summer is a perfect time to tap into your child's interests. Here are some ways to start a journey of discovery together. (In English and Spanish)
- Summer Literacy Challenge!
For most parents, it's a challenge to keep kids reading and writing all summer. Suddenly 10 weeks of summer can feel like a very long time! We've got 10 ideas to help make this summer full of fun, creativity and learning. (In English and Spanish)
- Take a Break, but Bring a Book!
Reading over the summer not only keeps your child from losing ground, but actually improves skills for the coming year. Here are some suggestions to keep a book in your child's hands over the summer months. (In English and Spanish)
- Use Summer Fun to Build Background Knowledge
Interesting experiences give kids a broader framework for new information they might encounter in books, and when kids have lots of experiences to draw on, they have a better chance of making a connection with what they read! Help your child build background knowledge this summer with these activities. (In English and Spanish)
- Day Trips for Book Lovers
Not everyone lives near Chincoteague lsland off the Maryland and Virginia coastline (Misty of Chincoteague) or has a chance to visit the Laura Ingalls Wilder house museum in the Ozarks (Little House on the Prairie). But books can inspire some exciting day trips.
- Strategies for Summer Reading for Children with Dyslexia
Here are a dozen simple strategies to help your children keep the academic skills they learned during the school year. Support them as they read. Give them material that is motivating — and some of it should be easy. Help them enjoy books and feel pleasure — not pressure — from reading. The summer should be a relaxed time where their love of learning can flower.
- Finding a Great Summer Program: A Checklist for Parents
Early and sustained summer learning opportunities lead to higher graduation rates, better preparation for college, and positive effects on children's self-esteem, confidence, and motivation. High-quality summer programs keep students engaged in learning, teach them new skills, allow them to develop previously unseen talents, and foster creativity and innovation.
- Reading Adventure Packs
Hands-on learning and fun centered around paired fiction and nonfiction books. More than 30 themes to explore!
Resources for teachers and librarians
- Get Ready for Summer! Ideas for Teachers to Share with Families
Reading Rockets has packed a "virtual beach bag" of activities for teachers to help families get ready for summer and to launch students to fun, enriching summertime experiences. Educators will find materials to download and distribute as well as ideas and resources to offer to students and parents to help ensure summer learning gain rather than loss.
- Summer Reading Loss
Do you spend most of the fall reviewing what was taught last spring? Help prevent summer reading loss by finding out why it happens and encouraging family literacy while kids are at home for the summer.
- Lost Summers: Few Books and Few Opportunities to Read
Many kids lose ground during the summer months, especially those from low income families. Part of the problem is that many students don't have easy access to books. This article presents some suggestions for what schools can do.
- Making a Splash With Summer Reading
If you're a children's librarian who wants to promote an upcoming summer reading program at your public library, start by targeting the local schools. After all, that's where the children are.
- Webcast: Summer Reading
Ron Fairchild and Dr. Loriene Roy, nationally recognized experts on reading and summer learning, address how to make the most out of the summer months. Taking advantage of high-quality programs and accessing community resources can turn potential summer loss into summer gain.
- Collaborative Summer Library Program
CSLP is a consortium of states working together to provide high-quality summer reading program materials for children, teens, and adults at the lowest cost possible for their public libraries. Public libraries in participating states or systems can purchase posters, reading logs, bookmarks, certificates and a variety of reading incentives. Materials are developed around an annual theme.
Articles and research on summer reading and summer loss
- The Learning Season: The Untapped Power of Summer to Advance Student Achievement
- How to Make Summer Reading Effective
- Effective Out-of-School Time Reading Programs
- Kids Lose Learning Skills Over the Summer Months
- Summer Can Set Kids on the Right — or Wrong — Course
- Lasting Consequences of the Summer Learning Gap
Summer reading initiatives
Summer reading booklists from Reading Rockets
More summer reading booklists
- Summer Reading 2019 (The Horn Book)
- Summer Reading Lists 2019 (ALA's Association for Library Service for Children)
- Summer Reading Series (We Need Diverse Books)
- Children’s Choices 2019 (International Literacy Association and Children’s Book Council)
- Teacher's Choices 2019 (International Literacy Association and Children’s Book Council)
- Summer Reading: Book Lists and Tips for Every Age (Brightly)
- Diverse Summer Reading Book List, K-8 (Lee & Low)
- Summer Reading Lists for Reluctant Readers (Understood)