Add more appeal to your summer reading program

It's easy to make your summer reading program more effective with Lexile measures. You may also consider these ideas to give your summer reading program more appeal:

Partner with your local public library

Most local public libraries have summer reading programs with events and incentives. Include them in your efforts by having a librarian come in and talk about their summer reading promotion and urge parents to get library cards for their kids. Work alongside your local librarians to make reading lists based on their collection of books with Lexile measures. Here are some sample Lexile-based lists from a public library.

Let parents know that Lexile measures are the bridge from an end-of-grade reading test score to the free resources in their local public library.

Open the school library over the summer

It's a shame to keep those great resources locked away for three months. Open the school library one afternoon a week and make an event of it. Hold a read-aloud, have parents conduct a story time or dramatize a book, or hire a storyteller or band.

Let children check out school library books over the summer. In a local public school program, we found that the return rate was nearly 100% if you build an incentive program around it.

Read along with an audio book

Put in the earbuds and pick up a book. Books on CD help struggling and reluctant readers to engage with literature. Reading in and along with other media—ebooks, online databases, podcasts—is great too. Ask your tech-savvy children to recommend the latest and greatest online content so that you can spread the word.

One book or three?

If your school participates in a "one-book" program, in which every child reads the same book over the summer and then engages in discussion groups upon returning to school in the fall, check the Lexile measure of that book. How many children are more than 100L below the book's Lexile measure and may struggle with it? Or how many are more than 50L above the book's Lexile measure and may find it particularly easy?

The extra effort required to do a "three-book" program, in which you offer books at low, medium and high Lexile levels, pays off because your lower-ability readers actually participate and your higher-ability readers stay challenged.