Avoid This Summer Slide…

pexels-photo-261348Have you heard of the dreaded ‘Summer Slide’ before? I’m NOT talking about the slide  your kids want to play on this summer! Many children, especially early and/or struggling readers, lose a lot of progress they may have made during the school year if they don’t read over the summer break.  They may ‘slide’ out of practice and find it even more challenging to get back to where they were during the previous school year.  Pretty much every expert recommends that parents prioritize reading as a summertime activity. So let’s do it together!

I found this very informative article from Scholastic with 3 tips to prevent the summer slide:

  1. Reading just 6 books over the summer could help a young reader from losing any reading progress!
  2. Parents need to read something every day! Doing this models great behavior for your kids to mimic. If they see you reading books, magazines, newspapers, cereal boxes, anything and everything, they will too!
  3. Keep reading aloud to them! This benefits children of all ages – yes, it does! Reading books out loud, which are at or above their current reading ability, will build their comprehension skills, listening skills, sharpen their focus, increase vocabulary, among many more wonderful benefits.

So here’s where my Soar Into Summer book club comes into play! In collaboration with RIF, I am featuring the 12 books they have selected for their summer reading program and, I will be reading them aloud on my YouTube channel. It’s a chance for you and your kids to read along with me. If you can’t find the selected book on your bookshelf, at your library, or at your local book shop, don’t worry as I will clearly feature all of the words on screen so that we truly can read along together. Be sure to encourage your little ones to read out loud too!

After reading along with me, visit the Story Time With Michele Book Club group on FaceBook and we can discuss the story. I’ll link to games, activities, and craft ideas related to each book as well. The goal is to stay engaged and excited about each and every book!

Here’s the full reading list for the summer. Stay connected with me via my Facebook page and YouTube channel, and let’s have fun reading all summer long!

Soar into summer full reading list v2

The tooth fairy cometh…

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Mind the gap!

It’s happening and I just can’t believe it! I really should know better; after all, growing up is what they’re supposed to do. Right? Ugh, this whole ‘rite of passage’ business is stirring up some crazy emotions in me. My little Gia is not so little any more: she lost her first tooth!

It’s not like I didn’t have plenty of time to prepare for this.  Actually, I think I had too much time because that tooth started wiggling ever so slightly a full 2 months ago!  I had seen those sweet little boxes for storing the tooth safely under the pillow but just never got around to buying one. That darn tooth seemed like it was never coming out, so I just kept putting it off! Needless to say, I was caught off-guard when the day came and had to scramble.  Luckily, I found a very old (1924) silver dollar coin from good old Grandpa and a handful of chocolate coins.

Gia very proudly wrote a note to the Tooth Fairy and sealed it in an envelope with her precious, tiny tooth.  It was not easy to fall asleep that night by any means – much like Christmas Eve! The surprise and sheer elation the next morning was seriously out-of-this-world! Her favorite part was getting chocolate coins. This just goes to show that it doesn’t have to be about the money.  I’ve heard of friends who have left $10, even $20 for a tooth.  I don’t know if my girl would have been half as excited for the cash as she was for the treat.  I say, as parents, lets take the pressure off of ourselves and just keep it simple.

And now, a week later, the second tooth is just about ready to come out as well.  With each wiggle of that tooth, I can see my baby girl transform ever so slightly into a big girl. She is realizing how amazing it is to grow up, to have one more thing in common with the other big kids at school and one less thing in common with her little sister. I might be a little crazy, but I believe she is even walking a little taller and exuding just a bit more confidence.

It’s a magical sight to behold.

I’d love to hear about your child’s first tooth fairy experience as well – be sure to share in the comments section below!