Online reading programs like ABC Reading Eggs help children prevent the summer reading slide while keeping them entertained over the holidays. Free trial
The holiday season is known to cause a pronounced dip – or 'slide' in children's reading skills. With an abundance of distractions and a shake‑up of routine, getting your child to read over the festive season can be a great challenge as a parent.
But with a bit of thought and preparation, the holidays can actually be the perfect time to enjoy fun and meaningful family activities based around books and reading. Here are some great holiday ideas to keep the magic of reading alive at home.
The night before you visit a museum, landmark, or special exhibition, find books and websites to read with your child to help plan your trip together.
Take a trip to the library and put together a list of books your child would like to read during the holidays. Display the list somewhere you'll see every day, like on the refrigerator, and reward your child with something small each time they check off a new title.
DEAR stands for 'Drop Everything and Read', where everybody in the house must drop what they're doing and read a book. Make it spontaneous and exciting, similar to announcing a special treat!
Encourage your child to show off their new reading skills to grandparents or relatives by reading them a story. Most children love being the focus of attention, and grandparents are usually more than happy to encourage their progress.
Cooking together is so much fun over the holidays and provides a great opportunity for your child to read out the ingredients and steps. Afterwards, help them write a menu for guests and family members, using as many descriptive words as they can.
Cut out the shape of a tree from a large sheet of construction paper and invite the whole family to decorate it, adding the words 'My Family Book Tree'. Hang up your tree near your usual reading area, and as each person reads a book they can write down the title and add a new leaf.
Choose a well‑loved story with fun and interesting characters and re‑enact it from beginning to end. Prepare some props and perform your story as a family for relatives when they come to visit.
Host a weekly reading circle at your house and invite your child's friends and family to join in. They can take turns choosing which books to read together each week.
If you're planning a long road trip during the holidays, games like 'I Spy' can be great for building early literacy skills. Don't forget to also stock up on good books for the road!
Encouraging your child to read a variety of texts is great for setting them up to become lifelong readers. Choose books you know they'll love and don't be afraid to experiment with joke books, riddles and comic books, which all offer their own unique benefits to young readers.
ABC Reading Eggs makes learning to read easy and fun for children aged 2–13. Based on solid scientific research, the program is proven to increase reading levels in just 15 minutes a day!