the “holiday reading slump”

I was reading in the paper about how over the holidays children slip back a reading level and what we (parents I guess or do they mean teachers) could do about it. I guess this implies that kids don’t read in the holidays. Just so we have this totally clear these are the summer holidays, the ones of your childhood memories… climbing trees, beaches, getting too hot and dashing back into the sea, the gritty skin feeling, hanging out with friends all day, cousins, hanging out with big kids, playing and more playing, swimming holes, car trips, camping, inventing games with water… that feeling that the holidays will go on forever. Maybe that was just us. I still think ‘woo hoo’ summer, time to be outside every day. I did read outside, then I’d read anywhere because I liked it. I kinda feel that summer is made for outside, getting a bit of vitamin nature.

I feel this concept of slipping back also implies, as did National Standards- may they languish in the bin where they belong, that learning is a straight line, there shouldn’t be flat bits, backward bits, there is to be NO sidetracking… NO following or focusing on something else like, friends? social skills, physical but non assessable skills…

It also implies that books are just promoted at school, only associated with school because in the holidays children don’t read them. There is something wrong with that and I think it’s schools. All that focus on reading as a skill – test accuracy, inference, genre… If that’s what reading is I don’t want that in my holidays either. We used to get read to a lot at school, I remember leaving one school at 7 in the middle of The Iron Man. Devastated.

Perhaps kids are reading, but for lazy pleasure, perhaps just below that level green book they could be aiming for, maybe they are keeping it simple – like an airport novel, a making book, signs, bits of life. Maybe us adults should be modeling reading to advance our levels this summer, The Bone People all the way, great summer reading!!

Enjoy your summer…

Read when you feel like it…

I intend to go back many levels this summer, test me next year! We only have 2 Famous Fives left…

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