Fun Summer Reading: How to Avoid the "Summer Slide"

The school year may be over, but the IDEA Team & Family knows that learning never ends. We encourage all IDEA scholars to remain scholastically sharp by engaging in summer reading. Not only is it fun, but data shows that students who read during summer vacation are more likely to score higher on tests once school resumes. 

To avoid the “Summer Slide”—the tendency for children to lose some of the academic gains they make during the previous school year—here are some suggested tips to encourage your IDEA scholar to turn the pages during their break. 

  • Choose the right books. We suggest the “Goldilocks Effect”— don’t make it too easy or too hard. Instead, make it just right! Series books are good for struggling readers. 

  • Encourage new interest – Encourage your child to explore interesting topics they want to read. Let them try different genres and formats— fiction, non-fiction, e-books, magazines, or whatever gets them going. 

  • Visit the local library - Endless book options, special summer programs… and it’s free! Check out audiobooks for road trips. 

  • Set a summer reading goal - How many books can your child read this summer? 


Just in case you need a little help selecting a book for your scholar, here are our top picks for fun summer reading.  Remember, these are not required books to read, just our suggestions!   

Lower Academy (Grades K-2) 


Mae Among the Stars” by Roda Ahmed 

 The story of Mae Jemison, the first African American woman to travel in space. 

Upper Academy (Grades 3-5) 


 “Front Desk” by Kelly Yang 

A young girl and her family manage a motel and adjust to a new life in America after emigrating from China. 

Middle School (Grades 6-8) 


“The Playbook: 52 Rules to Aim, Shoot, and Score in This Game Called Life” by Kwame Alexander 

Mixing poetry, photography, and inspiring stories from athletes and other role models, this book shares life lessons and advice for overcoming obstacles. 

High School (Grades 9-12) 


 “Life of Pi” by Yann Martel 

The story of a young man who survives a harrowing shipwreck and months in a lifeboat with a large Bengal tiger named Richard Parker. 


Happy summer reading, scholars! 

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