When summer arrives and your child's schedule is packed with swimming, camp, and family vacations, it can be hard to find time for reading. But your kids' reading skills should continue to grow even when school's out. Here are some ways to make reading a natural part of their summer fun: Explore your library. Visit your local library to check out books and magazines that your kids haven't seen before. Many libraries have summer reading programs, book clubs, and reading contests for even the youngest readers. There are often rewards, such as a free book, after completing their summer reading lists. Young kids will enjoy checking out books with their own library card. Read on the go. Going on a long car, bus, train, or plane trip? Make sure you have your child's favorite reads. If you're not driving, you can read the books aloud. Get some audiobooks (many libraries have large selections) and listen to them together while traveling. Make your own books. Pick one of your family's favorite parts of summer — whether it's soccer, ice cream, vacation, or the pool — and have your child draw or cut out pictures from magazines. Paste the pictures onto paper to make a book, and encourage your child to write text for each page. A younger child can tell the story for you to write down (using your child's words). When you're done, read the book together. Keep in touch. Kids don't have to go away to write about summer vacation. Even if your family stays home, you can encourage your child to send postcards, letters, or e-mails to friends and relatives. Ask a relative to be your child's pen pal, and encourage a weekly exchange of letters, postcards, or e-mails. Keep up the reading rituals. Even if everything else changes during the summer, keep up the reading routines already in place in your home. Read with your kids every day — whether it's just before bedtime or under a shady tree on a lazy afternoon. And don't forget to take a book to the beach! Just brush the sand off the pages! Back to Articles Related Articles How to Pick a Great Book Reading on your own isn't like reading for school. You can pick something that's all about your interests — whether it's ancient martial arts, computers, or fashion design. Get tips on how. Read More How to Pick a Great Book to Read If you find yourself overwhelmed when choosing a book, check out these 5 simple steps to picking a book you'll like. Read More School-Age Readers From kindergarten through third grade, kids' ability to read will grow by leaps and bounds. Although teachers provide lots of help, parents continue to play a role in a child's reading life. Read More Toddler Reading Time Reading to toddlers lays the foundation for their independent reading later on. Here are some tips. Read More Creating a Reader-Friendly Home A home filled with reading material is a good way to help kids become enthusiastic readers. Here are some ideas. Read More Helping Kids Enjoy Reading For many kids, reading doesn't come easily. But these simple steps can help them become eager readers. Read More Finding the Right Read Books make great gifts for kids. Here's how to pick one to fit a child's interests, maturity, and reading level. Read More Reading Resources Regardless of your child's age or reading level, almost every community has programs and resources that are helpful. Read More Everyday Reading Opportunities Finding time to read is important to developing literacy skills. And there are many easy and convenient ways to make reading a part of every day. Read More Reading Milestones This general outline describes the milestones on the road to reading and the ages at which most kids reach them. Read More Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor. © 1995-2021 KidsHealth®. All rights reserved. Images provided by The Nemours Foundation, iStock, Getty Images, Veer, Shutterstock, and Clipart.com.