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This month, summer is the ideal reading subject

July 14, 2011|Lesley Mason | Kids Ink

Keep kids interested in reading by engaging them in material that’s timely. Summer is the perfect reading subject for July. Whether it’s getting ready for vacation or trying to beat the heat, children respond to material that reflects something they can easily relate to.

 “Mayfly,” by Marthe Jocelyn (Ages birth to 5)
This simple story brings to life the excitement of summer vacation. The family says goodbye to the sizzling city, and hello to a summer at the family’s cottage.

“Hot City,” by Barbara M. Joosse (Ages 5 to 9)
Vibrantly illustrated, this story follows a pair of siblings as they try to escape the “Hot City.” Where do they end up? At the library, of course.

 “Summertime: from Porgy and Bess,” by George Gershwin, illustrated by Mike Wimmer (Ages 5 to 9)
If summer had a theme song it would be this American standard by Gershwin. Mike Wimmer’s painted illustrations vividly depict an early 1900s southern family, enjoying a typical summer day.

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“Lawn Boy,” by Gary Paulsen (Ages 9 to 12)
How does a young entrepreneur go from mowing lawns to investing in a prizefighting boxer? Newberry award-winning author Gary Paulson’s story of a young boy and his summer job is light hearted and fast paced, perfect for any reluctant summer reader.

 “It’s Not Summer Without You,” by Jenny Han (Ages 13 and older)
In the followup to the “The Summer I Turned Pretty,” 16-year-old Belly Conklin feels displaced. Unlike years past, she won’t be at the beach with her mother’s best friend, Susannah, and her sons, Jeremiah and Conrad. Belly must struggle with facing change after death and grieving take hold.

 “The Big Game of Everything,” by Chris Lynch (Ages 13 and older)
Two brothers find themselves at odds, but closer than ever after spending the summer working at their grandfather’s golf course. A great story of relationships and self-respect, a great book for discussion.

Lesley Mason is children and teen librarian at Washington County Free Library.

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