It’s no secret our family LOVES to read. Any time we go to the library or have new books in the home, they’re poured over almost instantly and it feels like a whirlwind has left the room with books scattered behind – obvious evidence that a good time has been had by all.

So why not take some of these good times into the great outdoors, especially on such fantastic weather summer days as we’ve been having? Yesterday, we did just that. We gathered up some new library books, packed a picnic, and headed to the conservation area across the road for an outdoor reading party.

For some reason, reading is just much more fun with fresh air and bright sunshine surrounding you. When you’re sitting under the beautiful shade of a tree, listening to not much other than the voices of children reading, a calm settles over you.

The hurriedness of life passes away – there’s no rush, nowhere to be, nothing more important to do than to just be here, in the moment, in the characters of the stories.

Continuing reading over the summer can be a challenge, just by not having or making the time to do it.

There are some fantastic reading challenges out there – one that we heard about on a fellow blogger’s blog just recently is from Wise Owl Books. Their summer reading program involves a great little map with stars along the way for rewards (which you determine) for reading – and my kids do really well with incentives :D In just 2 days of starting they’re already at their first star! I’ll be hard-pressed to keep up with those boys at this rate!

Over the summer we are reading as a family Paddle to the Sea.

Last year my friend Jessica read it with her boys and blogged about all the activities they were incorporating into the story – we will be doing these as well, so I’m excited for the kids to get into it!

We’re also reading through some other read aloud chapter books (including a lot of Thornton W. Burgess) finishing up our Ambleside Online suggested reading for Year 1 (the rich history in Trial and Triumph and Our Island Story is constantly blowing me away! AND the kids LOVE it!) and our Apologia science Lands Animals of the Sixth Day.

Remember – just because summertime is here, doesn’t mean the learning and exploring through reading together has to stop! Get thee outside and enjoy some great weather and great stories together!


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