I have always loved to read. Growing up as on only child on a farm, books were my escape and my best friend. It all started with my love of Nancy Drew! (remember her? 🙂 ) Reading is still one of my favorite pasttimes, and I love to read with my kids! My oldest son is very much like me. He’s been reading since he was little, and easily gets lost in books. He gets really bored when he has nothing to read, so I don’t have to push to get him to do it. My youngest, well, reading is not his favorite thing. It’s not that he can’t read, its just not on the top of his priority list. He likes being read to, but finding books that hold his interest so he will finish them, is difficult. During the school year we have required reading each day. I choose books that I want my kids to read, and they either read them on their own, or we read them together.
In the summer, I relax things a bit. My kids are still required to read on a daily basis, but I allow them to choose their own books. We visit the library a LOT. These are some of the books my kids are reading this summer.
My oldest son (a rising sophomore) was introduced to the Divergent series by a friend from our homeschool group. He has read the first two books so far and is eagerly looking forward to more. He is also a fan of the Percy Jackson series, and mysteries/legal dramas as well (this is the boy who wants to work for the FBI when he grows up). We both read Defending Jacob a few months ago, and really liked that as well. The next book on his list is The Great Gatsby. This was on my list of “must-reads” for high school, but after seeing all the movie previews, he asked to read the book. (I have a rule at my house that when a movie is made from a classic novel, you must read the novel before you see the movie!). From the waiting list at the library, I’m guessing a lot of kids have suddenly developed an interest in Gatsby, or else a lot of teachers assigned it for summer reading, because he was number 20 when he signed up for it. The book should be here next week.
When given the chance to choose his own books, my youngest enjoys non-fiction. He has developed a current interest in wolves, so these are some of the books he checked out during our library visit. In the past, he has also read books on Bigfoot, Legos, Star Wars, baseball, and the Loch Ness Monster. This boy has a wide range of interests that are constantly changing, and he usually just chooses a book based on whatever he is into at the moment.
He is also really really into comics (just like his dad was). He has an extensive collection that my husband preserved from his boyhood days, and his favorite character is Captain America. So, comics are on his summer reading list. While they aren’t my first choice, I figure, at least he’s reading something he enjoys. I don’t want to make reading a chore for him all the time, because then he just won’t do it at all. There is nothing wrong with strictly reading for pleasure. I myself have quite a large collection of Calvin and Hobbes comics, because they were one of my favorites growing up.
I still read out loud to my kids before bed too. My oldest son and I are on the third book of the Lord of the Rings series, while my youngest and I are finishing up the third Harry Potter book. When we go on vacation next month I do plan on telling my youngest to choose one chapter book to bring with him, but I will let him pick it out.
I do think it’s important for kids to read in the summer, but I try to allow them to follow their own interests since we are not officially “in school”. How does summer reading work at your house? To see what other crew members had to say about summer reading for boys, check out the rest of our blog cruise here: