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5. Summer Reading: ES SUMMER READING

Importance of Summer Reading

Research shows that reading only six books or a couple of hours during the summer may prevent a child from regressing!

It is essential that children continue to read during the summer to prevent the "summer slide." The summer slide is the tendency for students to lose some of the academic gains they made during the previous school year. Research shows that children experience learning loses when they don't engage in reading activities during the summer. Did you know:

  • The amount of time children spend reading outside of school is linked to reading achievement. Access to books and magazines is directly related to higher reading achievement.
  • Children who are read to in the home and who use the library perform better in school and are more likely to continue to use the library as a source of lifetime learning.
  • To succeed in school and life, children and young adults need ongoing opportunities to learn and practice essential skills.


NoveList is an interactive database that has the ability to recommend books based on description, author, or title. NoveList also has recommended reading lists for children, teens, and adults, as well as links to book award lists and fiction related websites. 

Audiobook Sites

Audiobooks are a great way to expose children to complex language, expressive reading, and fantastic stories. Listening to audiobooks also gives kids the valuable and enjoyable experience of using their own imaginations to visualize the people and places they’re hearing about. Audiobooks are a great way to experience stories anytime, anywhere.

This not-for-profit site has an abundance of books that celebrate different languages and cultures and cultivate a life-long love of reading. 

The site is intended to be a resource for parents, teachers and children to easily and simply listen to a great collection of children's books. There are some books in other languages.

Storyline Online is an award-winning children’s literacy website. It streams videos featuring celebrated actors reading children’s books alongside creatively produced illustrations. Storyline Online receives over 100 million views annually from children all over the world and is available 24 hours a day. Reading aloud to children has been shown to improve reading, writing and communication skills, logical thinking and concentration, and general academic aptitude, as well as inspire a lifelong love of reading. 

Storynory is a website and podcast with audio streaming. They have been giving free audio stories to the world since November 2005. All of the content is free.

If you love hearing books read aloud, LibriVox, offers free audiobooks read by volunteers from around the world. Many of these titles are from Project Gutenberg, so if you are into classics, this is a great source for you. 


Recommended Reading Lists

American Library  Association

‚ÄčAssociation for Library Services to Children (ALSC) Diversity in Action (Día), 2022

Bank Street College of Education
Best Books of the Year, 2022 Edition

The Children's Book Council

The books in these lists are read and voted on by thousands of children across the US each year. These Favorites Lists can be counted on as books children, teens, and teachers really enjoy reading!  

Publisher's Weekly Summer Reads 2023

Additional Summer Reading Lists

Award Winning Book Lists

eBooks and Audiobooks


Sora is offered by Shanghai American School, and it lets you borrow digital content, such as eBooks and audiobooks anytime, anywhere. Our collection has more than 5,000 titles.

To log into Sora, use your school ID card number as both your username and your password. 

Digital Magazines


Shanghai American School Libraries have subscribed to Flipster Digital Magazines and has more than 30 magazines available. You can read on your computer or download the Flipster app from the app store to your device. Once in the app, search for Shanghai American School and then log in. The username and password are the same as the rest of the SAS databases. 

Take a look at the this 
LibGuide to find out what magazines we subscribe to and more information.

Really Cool Stuff

Wonderopolis® is a place where natural curiosity and imagination lead to exploration and discovery in learners of all ages. Each day, this site poses an intriguing question—the Wonder of the Day®—and explores it in a variety of ways. 



Check out the Ripley’s Believe It or Not! site for unbelievable information. It's the home of weird news, stories, incredible videos, photos, exhibits, and so much more.


undefinedThe Guinness World Records Kids site is a place to discover everything you can about mind blowing feats. Read about the incredible record-holders and their stories, and browse the online collection of record titles for awe-inspiring videos and photos. 


Visit the Shel Silverstein official site for kids to listen to Shel's poems read aloud. Learn more about Shel's books, watch exclusive animated excerpts, play games, and download fun activities!

International Children's Digital Library

The International Children's Digital Library strives to provide books to children from all over the world in their native language. Whether you are from America, Japan, Russia, China, Korean, or Africa you can find a book here to read.

Encouraging Summer Reading

Tips to encourage summer reading

  1. Go to the library and borrow some books. This does not take much time, but it sure gives plenty of opportunity for fun reading.

  2. Pick out a good chapter book to read to or with your child. This may be a book that you want to read to them or one for them to read to you (or a bit of both). It can be hard to find time to work all the way through a chapter book during the school year, but it can be easier during the summer months. Books by Roald Dahl and E.B. White are especially popular in my household.

  3. Celebrate the completion of a book. You can watch a movie of a book that you have read and pop some popcorn. Maybe take a trip to a museum related to the book’s content or a backyard camping trip or perhaps a cooking experience.

  4. Write a letter to your child and drop it in the mail. Kids love to get mail. In our digital age people write fewer real letters, but a letter can be a surprising and stimulating experience for children. Who doesn’t like to get a personal letter? Write a letter that requires some response: What do you most want to do this summer? What are you reading now? What’s that about? 

  5. Start a diary. Buy a notebook and write down summer memories.When we’d go on summer vacation, we always brought along a composition book. 

  6. Schedule a daily reading time. Summer can sometimes get boring for kids and having regularly scheduled activities helps. Parents are often good at loading up kids’ schedules with things like soccer or swimming—which are great—but schedule in some quiet reading time too, they’ll come to appreciate it.

  7. Subscribe to a magazine. Children’s magazines are fun to read, and they change things up and bit which can encourage kids to read. There are lots of good choices of kids’ mags. Here are a few suggestions: Highlights, National Geographic Kids, Ranger Rick, Boy’s Life, American Girl, Sports Illustrated for Kids, Cricket, Cobblestones, Dig. Pick one that fits your child’s interests.

  8. Encourage book clubbing. Some kids find reading to be lonely. There are things that you can do to make it more social and fun for them. For instance, get your child and his/her friends to agree to read a particular book each month. Then have a get-together—perhaps a sleepover— at your house for the kids to share their favorite snacks and talk about the book.

  9. Encourage your child to read and use “to do” books. Kids love to get their hands dirty. Doing stuff is fun. Use reading as a jumping-off-point for arts and crafts activities, sports, cooking, science experiments, etc.

  10. Establish a family reading time. Parents can get in on this reading thing, too. Maybe one night a week, try turning off all the screens, and everyone pick up a good book or magazine; 15-30 minutes. Not only does that create some good reading practice time for your kids, but it shows them that you’re into this reading thing too, which can encourage reading. Modeling will always be more powerful than telling. If you get into reading, they will, too.