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The Summer Book Jar

Are you looking for a way to engage your summer readers? Enter the Summer Book Jar!

Summer Reading season is upon us.  Some schools have long and thorough lists.  Some suggest working with the local library and their summer book programs.  And some may take a more laid-back approach and have students track their own choices.

No matter the process, the outcome is the same….READ!  (and keep it from becoming a tedious battle)   Enter the Summer Book Jar!

Whether you are making up your own summer reading list for your younger readers or have one from school or the library, you can use this trick to keep your readers engaged.

1. Pick a vessel.  I chose a mason jar for mine because I happen to have a surplus.  But anything with a lid will do (mustard jars and yogurt containers run through the dishwasher work well!)  

2. Have your readers decorate the jar—stickers, embellishments, their names…you get the idea.  Having them make it “their own” helps to take ownership of the contents.

3.  On slips of paper, write the names of the books they will be reading over the summer.

4.  Use the jar to choose and track the books (setting your own pace).  The children can use the slips as bookmarks during reading.  As they finish each book, the slips can be taped to a chart or made into a paper ring chain.

5.  When the jar is empty, celebrate the super, awesome, totally phenomenal reading accomplishments of your budding scholar!

(Extension Activity: Keep a journal and draw a picture and write a summary or fun ‘fact’ from each book.)

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

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