Reading can be a wonderful adventure!
Yes! School is almost out for summer!
Exciting, right? Or is it scary and stressful?
We get it–it’s both. We don’t have to pack lunches and monitor homework but we do have to figure out our childcare, camp, and the dreaded summer reading.
Summer reading…is it really that important? If our kids don’t love reading, can we just skip it?
Our instinct is to think about how summer gives kids with ADHD the opportunity to take a break from the pressure and hard work that comes with school. We want to give them more time to explore their creative side, play outside, and engage in activities that they truly enjoy.
Given how challenging school can be, it makes sense that we want to just give our kids nothing but summer fun. As tempting as this may be, and as important as non-academic activities are, staying on track with reading is necessary to avoid a summer learning backslide.
Creating a summer reading routine can prevent backsliding. Unfortunately, many kids with ADHD will push back against these activities because of negative experiences they have had throughout the school year. As a parent, how do we get our children to read a book without engaging in a summer-long power struggle?
Make it easy and FUN!
Work with your child to create a consistent plan and routine. Instead of telling them to read before bed, find out when they want to read. Maybe it is during lunch on the back deck!
Use timing devices so they can feel accomplished when they complete their requirement. For children that don’t like to read, it feels really great when they get immersed in a book and 30 minutes pass in the blink of an eye. We like devices like a TimeTimer that show the passage of time. Hint: Our May Brain Hack Pack is all about summer reading and has a TimeTimer in it!
Alternate books with other fun reading materials. Your child can read instruction manuals out loud to you, complete Mad Libs with their siblings or, read to the family pet, etc. Mix it up–try them all out. Just be sure to sprinkle in some appropriate age level books in there!
Use your child’s interests to encourage reading. Does your child like to draw? Have your child create new illustrations. Does your child like basketball? Pair an audio book with dribbling a ball.
Be a role model–pick up a book of your own to read!
Set up a reading plan before the summer begins–create a plan that both you and your child will feel good about. Happy reading!
We have a very exciting new Virtual Summer Book Club for middle schoolers ages 11-13. We will be reading The Peonies Summer in the City! Learn more here!