2011-06-16 / Local & State

Keep Kids Reading During Summer Months

Summer vacation is important. It gives kids a chance to learn more about themselves by attending camp, working a summer job or just diving deep into a hobby.

But it’s also important that children maintain the skills they’ve developed at school over the summer, particularly reading skills. To help, Nestlé has created “The Nestlé Share the Joy of Reading” program benefitting Reading Is Fundamental (RIF), the nation’s oldest and largest nonprofit children’s literacy organization, to ensure that low income children around the country have books to learn, grow, and develop a love of reading, even in the summer!

Here are some tips from RIF to keep your young ones excited about reading this summer:

Make a chart to keep track of the books they read this summer. Generate excitement by competing with same-age relatives or friends to see who reads more.

Write a letter to your favorite author. A librarian can help you find a postal or email address.

Start a journal with a friend or relative. Take turns writing in it all summer long. You can even do this by mail or e-mail, especially if a parent or relative is deployed or away on business.

Make your own fun board game. Include game pieces, cards, and a spinner or dice.

Collect jokes from your family and friends and make your own joke book.

Plan an entertaining family “booknic” at your favorite outdoor spot. Pack a lunch and plenty to read.

Make dinnertime reading time. As family members are preparing meals or cleaning up, one person can read aloud from a favorite classic or an exciting new novel.

Enthusiastic readers can also help spread their love of the written word. And there are many things you can do to encourage reading in your community and nationwide.

For example, candy lovers can help by looking for promotional codes inside specially marked bags of Nestlé candy, such as Butterfinger and BabyRuth, and visiting www.celebrationcorner.com/ RIF. Each time they enter a valid package promotion code to play an instant win game, Nestlé will donate ten cents to RIF. The company may be donating up to $250,000, with a minimum guarantee of $100,000, to RIF through the Nestlé Share the Joy of Reading Program. You can also participate without purchasing anything and can view the official rules on the website.

You can find more fun and easy ways to encourage summer reading in your family by visiting www.rif.org or by visiting your local public library.

You can also tie your reading choices to family trips. Kids will enjoy reading about animals before visiting the zoo or a quick review of history before visiting a local historical site. Even keeping score at a baseball game can serve as a literacy activity.

So keep it fun and light, and keep your kids reading this summer!

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