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Hudson - Litchfield News 12 - August 27, 2010


Tips to sharpen your child’s reading skills The end of summer vacation may be approach-


ing, but there is still plenty of time for youth to read a few books to refresh their reading skills before starting school. While many grown-ups jump at the chance to


read books and magazines on vacation, children are often quick to drop the book and run toward the waves when hitting the beach, pool or camp- ground. While everyone reminisces about those


summer days from childhood, the truth is that in this age of video games, DVD players in cars and text-messaging teens, youth are less likely to pick up a book than ever. That may come at a price. According to educators, summer reading is


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critical in continuing good academic perfor- mance and advancing literacy skills. Studies show that children who read several books during the summer maintain or surpass the reading skills they achieved during the previ- ous school year. James Kim, an assistant education professor at Harvard University, claims students who read four or more books over the summer do bet- ter than those who didn’t when they return to school in the fall. Various studies show that the


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“summer slide,” a dip in read- ing and writing skills, occurs when schools let out in June, and youth leave the classroom and studies behind until Sep- tember. Re- search from groups such as Scholas- tic and the National Summer Learning Association documents that skills decrease


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more significantly among moderate- to low- income students, and that the summer slide in- creases year after year for children who continue to avoid summer reading. If your child hasn’t picked up a book or enough


books this summer, there is still time to encourage them to do so. Suzanne Poole, TD Bank’s execu- tive vice president of retail sales strategy and distribution offers these tips:


* Read stories with your child and ask ques-


tions about the stories. * Let your child choose books about subjects in


which they are interested. * Set aside some time each day or week as


reading time so it is a scheduled activity. * Encourage your child to say words and


phrases out loud. * Practice sounding out words your child may have difficulty reading. * Provide the word your child is struggling


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with so that he/she doesn’t become frustrated and lose the enjoyment of the experience. * Offer them incentive as motivation. Not in


the sense that you are bribing them to read, but showing them that hard work offers rewards. TD Bank’s Summer Reading Program encourag- es kids to read and teaches them about saving money by contributing $10 into a new or exist- ing young savers account for each child who reads 10 books throughout the summer. To sign up, visit www.tdbank.com/summerreading. * Have fun. If you’re reading this as you pack for your


end-of summer trip, start running your kids to pre-season sports practices or hit the store for back-to-school supplies, think about picking up some books for your kids. Experts suggest even one or two books will help. - Courtesy of ARAcontent


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