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While summer may seem short, it can feel long to the most motivated readers to stay inspired to stick with even the most captivating of books during the two and a half months away from school. Remember how I shared how I got my kids to keep reading this summer? I have another secret- novelty! Mixing it up by suggesting an alternate reading spot can make the world of difference and this year we were inspired by the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge Reading Under the Stars (powered by EVEREADY®) theme.
My kids took the Reading Under the Stars theme literally. Armed with flashlights, headlamps, and their iPods with the Scholastic Reading Timer mobile app to help them log minutes that contribute to the Read for the World Record, they discovered new spots to cozy up with a book in the yard as the sun set.
Our eight year old loved lying on a blanket in hopes that our dog, Oliver, would lie down next to him for sunset story hour. He often brought both a flashlight and a headlamp outside – choosing his light source based on how he felt like lying that particular evening!
Ten year old Emily preferred to climb one of her favorite trees, perching on a branch to use the last bits of daylight to read.
When the sun set, she’d don a headlamp for hands-free reading in the hammock or in a chair right by our back door until she got to a good stopping place in her book. On the clearest of nights, she’d linger a bit longer waiting for twinkling stars to appear to identify favorite constellations while trying to find new ones with the Scholastic constellation guide.
On the night of the Super Moon, our kids switched it up and decided to read in our front yard, instead of the back. Sitting on the front steps perched high above the street with books in their laps, they talked about the size of the moon and why it was called a Super Moon. As fans of space science who helped me interview Astronaut Karen Nyberg at NASA Headquarters earlier this year, they always love contemplating different aspects of outer space. On this particular evening they talked about life on other planets, wondering if astronauts would really travel to Mars and find life.
I loved how this year’s Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge theme of Reading Under the Stars introduced some novelty into our reading routine by providing the idea of reading at night under the stars on warm summer nights while encouraging a love of science.
Even though school will start next week for our children, the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge Reading Under the Stars isn’t over! Kids will have the opportunity to continue logging minutes until September 5. It’s so exciting to know that kids have logged over 231 million minutes read this summer so far and there are still a couple more weeks to go until the challenge ends!
For more information about the Reading Under the Stars Challenge:
- Like Scholastic Parents on Facebook
- Follow Scholastic on Twitter and Instagram
- Follow the Summer Reading Challenge Pinterest Board
- Like the Summer Reading Challenge YouTube Playlist
If you’re like our family and are transitioning back to school in the next couple weeks, Scholastic is hosting a #SummerToSchool Twitter Chat this Monday, August 25 at 8 pm EST to help you get ready for the start of the new school year.
- What: A #SummerToSchool Twitter chat!
- Who: Featuring Maggie McGuire, Vice President of eScholastic Kids and Parents (@Scholastic), John Schumaker,Librarian and Mr. Schu Reads blogger (@MrSchuReads), and Bekki Lindner, Chasing Supermom blogger and former teacher (@chasingsupermom)!
- When: Monday, August 25 @ 8pm EST
- Where: #SummerToSchool on Twitter!
- Why: Because making the transition from summer to school learning can be a challenge for all parents, no matter how old your child is or what his or her learning style may be. Maggie, John, and Bekki will be covering topics such as celebrations, (the end of summer; the beginning of school), social change (friendships, new teachers, relationships, feelings), routines (establishing schedules, setting goals, managing expectations), and sharing teacher tips (what teachers wish parents knew about going back to school).
Plus, there will be giveaways! Eight lucky winners will be randomly selected during the chat to receive a Reading Under the Stars prize pack that includes a reading blanket, flashlights, battery packs, bookmarks, posters, and select books.
Images courtesy of Scholastic. I am a member of the Scholastic Circle and receive books and other products from Scholastic for my involvement.