Here's a fantastic list of fun summer reading for kids, from Teresa Fagan. Sometimes even the most committed-to-books mom is lured into upping the screen time for kids in the summer. Here's some kick-in-the-pants motivation from Fagan, a mother of eight, to unplug:
Our kids are bombarded by bad books, TV, and video games — so how do we get them to read good books? First, we must convince ourselves that it’s worth the effort to try.
The most serious battle going on in this country is over the souls of our children. It is impossible to exaggerate the power of the image to form or deform the way they think. It is crucial to arm them with heroes that make virtue attractive. This will entail exercising your God-given authority, but that’s what it’s for.
For starters, get the TVs and computers out of their bedrooms, and drastically curtail their use. Cut the plugs if you have to. Then, stock the house with good books.
When they’re bored, they will read.
Next, insist they read only books from a list or publisher you trust. It’s not easy, but many families do this. A guideline: assume that any book published after l960 is guilty until proven innocent.
If your children don’t have the habit of reading, require them to read at least a book a week. The reading level doesn’t matter so long as they enjoy the book. Leaving an enticing book out on a table will lure some children into reading it.
Reading aloud to them is as good as their reading on their own and has the added benefit of strengthening the bond between you and your child. Sometimes all it takes to convince them a book is good, is to read aloud the first two chapters. Some will grab the book from you to finish it on their own. Others you will have to tantalize by leaving off at the exciting part, so that in order to see how it ends, they will have to read the book themselves.