In the thick of this scorching summer weather, sometimes a few indoor afternoons reading with your child can be just the activity you need. Countless summer-centered stories are available in local book stores or online, and can turn your break from the sun into an exciting learning opportunity for your child. Here’s one of our recommendations for cooling down and getting your family pumped about reading:
A Summery Saturday Morning
Margaret Mahy and Selina Young. Viking Juvenile, 1998.
Age range: 2-6 years
This playful story written by the late and celebrated New Zealander Margaret Mahy features a quirky account of a woman, several children, and a couple of dogs heading to the seaside together. The group moves through the neighborhood and quickly causes chaos on the trip. Hilarity ensues as the bunch finds themselves in a series of shenanigans, including the kids chasing a cat and a bicycling boy, and the dogs chasing a family of irritable geese.
The standout feature of this delightful book is its neat rhyming aspect. Each new scene or scenario is presented in a short, repetitive stanza that is to be sung to the tune of “Pop! Goes the Weasel,” or “The Wheels on the Bus.” Moving through the story in this manner can be great fun for you and your child, and an easy way to reinforce his or her rhyming and word-association skills. The book is also packed full with exciting and varied action verbs, unusual adjectives, and tricky alliterations that can help to boost your reader’s vocabulary and fluency.
*Bright Kids Tip: For even more fun learning opportunities with this book, invite your child to create his or her own silly scenes for the group to experience on the beach trip. Encourage them to think of new phrases to rhyme together in the same style as the rest of the story, or to come up with new creative alliterations.
Throughout nearly two decades of being in print, the award-winning “A Summery Saturday Morning” (link to purchase below) has received much praise and has been a hit for many parents and teachers around the world. We hope it is just as much of a hit for you and your family, and we happily welcome any photos or stories of your summer reading experiences on any of our social media accounts. Happy reading!