Leap Into Literacy 5th Grade


Setting Up a Successful Summer of Reading

"Just like hockey players lose some of their skills if they stay off their skates and off the ice for three months, children who do not read in the summer lose two to three months of reading development."

-Richard Allington

We can motivate our students to read this summer by setting the expectation, giving them choice, and helping them set realistic goals with detailed plans.

  • Send the message that reading in the summer is important and can happen anywhere: the beach, the pool, outside under a tree, etc. Share your own favorite summer reading spots.
  • Tell students that they can choose to read any books they want in the summer, even if that means rereading an old favorite or reading something that’s not on the summer reading list.
  • Help students make a summer reading goal. Here are some possibilities:
    • I will read for _____ minutes every day.
    • I will read ____ books this summer.
    • I will read the _____ series.
    • I will read ____ books about koalas to learn more about them.
  • Follow up with a plan- Goals are important, but we need realistic and specific plans to make sure we follow through and meet our goals. Here are some examples:
    • I will read for 20 minutes every day when I wake up.
    • I will read ____, _____, and ____ when my family goes on vacation in July. I will read _____, _____, and _____ at the pool in August.
    • I will read the _____ series right before dinner on weekdays.
    • I will read 8 books about koalas when I go to Nana’s house on Mondays.


Summer Writing

Just like in reading, summer slide can also occur in writing. Here are some suggestions to help keep those writing skills sharp.

  • Summer Writing Journals - during the last week of school, help students create and decorate journals for summer writing

  • Daily Writing Prompts - there are numerous prompts available online to help those students who need a nudge.

  • Student-Center Blogging - many students have worked on blogs during the school year. Encourage them to continue over the summer.

  • Have your students send postcards from their summer vacations to the school, then use for a back to school bulletin board.

  • Encourage students to keep a vacation diary

  • Create travel brochures from vacation spots

  • Participate in a summer writing club

Here are some sites for writing prompts.