Even avid readers sometimes need a change.
It might be simple, such as switching from fiction to nonfiction or trying a book of poetry.
Here are some ways to switch up summer reading.
» Organize a children’s book-swapping party. Invite children from your neighborhood, church, family or another group to trade books.
Sort the books by reading level and offer a one-for-one exchange.
Encourage participants to come dressed as their favorite book character. Have the other guests figure out what character a costume represents.
Ÿ Have a summer reading party. Guests could be your child’s friends or you could invite families. Spend some time reading aloud, then talk about the books. Do an activity related to the book or books.
Deb Carlson, a third-grade teacher at Hoover Elementary School in Council Bluffs, offered one example: Make cookies after reading “Mmm, Cookies” by Robert Munsch.
Or read an Eric Carle book (“The Very Hungry Caterpillar,” “Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?” “The Very Quiet Cricket” are among them) and do an art project related to the book.
Another variation of a reading party is to pair reading with a movie. Have an adult read a book aloud and then everyone watches a movie based on the book.
One example: Read aloud “Mr. Popper’s Penguins” by Richard and Florence Atwater, then see the Jim Carrey movie of the same name, which is based on the book.
Ÿ Act out a story. Nancy Mosier of Lincoln, a kindergarten teacher at Lakeview Elementary School in Lincoln, offered this suggestion:
“Mo Willems has a great series simply called ‘Elephant and Piggie.’ These are books that are meant to be acted out. It is a lot of fun to read the books and then the child and one other person can act them out.
“His website is mowillems.com and it has a lot of great ways to interact with his books.”
Ÿ Augment other activities with books or vice versa. After a visit to a pet store or the Nebraska Humane Society, read “Ghost Dog Secrets” by Peg Kehret. Or read the book first, then do the field trip.
Next weekend will bring Railroad Days to the Durham Museum, Lauritzen Gardens, Union Pacific Railroad Museum, Historic General Dodge House, RailsWest Railroad Museum and Joslyn Art Museum. A $15 family pass will admit two adults and children to all of the museums. There will be train-related activities at each.
Before going, read some books about railroads.
Choices include “The Great Railroad Race: The Diary of Libby West, Utah Territory 1868” by Kristiana Gregory from the “Dear America” series; “Trains” by Byron Barton; “Iron Horses” by Verla Kay; “All Aboard ABC” by Doug Magee and Robert Newman; “John Henry” by Julius Lester and Jerry Pinkney.
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