This Summer, Indulge Your Kids In Some Pleasure Reading

This Summer, Indulge Your Kids In Some Pleasure Reading

10 May 2018 | 9 min Read

Mausam Pandya

Author | 24 Articles

What’s a long, sweltering Indian summer without nimboo paani and a good book or four? Research says that kids who shun books absolutely during summer break actually forget what they have learnt in the previous year. And if this continues year on year, the learning loss in these kids is massive. Oxford learning says that kids who don’t read during the summer gradually fall two years behind their classmates by the end of sixth grade.

Let’s prevent this from happening to our kids. Just like kids love browsing the aisles of a supermarket, if placed in a library, they will love browsing the shelves  of books. Encourage them to pick out books that they like and to read them or read to them if they are young. You will be instilling a lifetime love of books and learning in them. What else could a parent ask for!

So, here’s a list of books to indulge your kids in some pleasure reading this summer:

For Laugh out loud reading sessions, there’s Stuck by Oliver Jeffers


Image Source: goodreads

What would you do if your kite got stuck in a tree?

It all begins when Floyd’s kite gets stuck in a tree. The solution seems simple enough. Remove favourite shoe, throw it and free the kite. But things don’t always go as planned. Instead, Floyd finds his favourite shoe too is stuck in the tree now. Oh-o! So he throws another shoe to free the first shoe. Then a cat, then a ladder to free the cat, on and on until the tree becomes the place where all things stuck are.

Read it along with your kid to find out if Floyd ever gets his kite free in this delightfully hilarious children’s picture book by the award-winning, internationally best-selling author-illustrator Oliver Jeffers.

Warning: Reading this book can cause a laugh riot. So tread cautiously.

For books that inspire, there’s  Grandfather Gandhi  By Arun Gandhi & Bethany Hegedus, Illustrated by Evan Turk

Image Source: goodreads

Introduce your kids to the Mahatma with this intimate portrayal of Gandhiji seen through the eyes of his then 12-years-old grandson Arun. One hot summer day Arun arrives at Sevagram Ashram, where Gandhi ji lived in later years of his life, with his parents and they begin to participate in the ashram life. Transitioning from the cushy lifestyle of electricity and moving to ashram life of morning prayers, chores, pumpkin mush and the dreaded language lessons is challenging for Arun, to say the least. The turning point of the story comes when an older boy pushes Arun on the soccer field and injures him. Arun seething with anger, picks up a rock to retaliate, but then runs tearfully to his grandfather instead. Arun is surprised to discover that the revered Mahatma gets angry too. The grandfather then lovingly explains to Arun that anger is like electricity! “It can strike, like lightning, and split a living tree into two…Or it can be channelled, transformed. Then anger can illuminate. It can turn the darkness into light.” Evan Turk’s exemplary illustrations, rich in symbolic meaning contribute greatly to the tale. Gandhi ji’s spinning wheel is a repeated motif and the tangled yarn surrounding Arun symbolises his frustration and anger. It is a compelling story about a child seeking his elders’ approval and an adoring grandson’s tribute to his loving, legendary grandfather. A must read for one and all!

If you wish to delve into a world of fantasy, there’s The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe By C. S. Lewis

Image Source: abebooks

Get set to enter the magical land of Narnia, the land just beyond the wardrobe,  where animals talk, trees can walk, an evil White Witch covers the landscape with snow and makes it so that Christmas can never return to Narnia. She bewitches you with Turkish Delight and promises of Kingship. But beware, she can also turn you into stone if she is displeased and decorate the statuesque stone figures in her palace courtyard.

But where there is a villain, there’s always a hero! Enter Aslan, the magnificent lion who is wise, just and a powerful force for good. Read the book along with your kid to discover how Aslan along with Lucy, Susan, Edmund and Peter rescues Narnians and restores the kingdom of Narnia. An enchanting tale of courage, loyalty and wonder, The Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe will delight your little reader and enrich his imagination!

If it’s mindfulness that you wish to inculcate, grab a copy of What Should Danny Do? By Ganit and Adir Levy

Image Source: zulily

What if your kid could be a superhero? What would his greatest power be?

Danny, our protagonist, is a Superhero-in-Training. And what’s his super power you ask? He possesses the most important superpower of all, “The Power to Choose.” And he is just beginning to learn about it and exercise it. Written in a “Choose Your Own Story” style, the book follows Danny through his day as he faces choices that kids face on a daily basis. Your kid will love trying to reach all nine endings. And in the process, they will learn some of life’s most important lessons. One of a kind children’s book, this one’s a sure summer hit!

To teach them kindness, grab a copy of Last Stop On Market Street By Matt de la Pena


Image Source: goodreads

Last Stop On Market Street is a captivating tale of CJ and his grandma as they ride the bus every Sunday after church across town. Life is good for CJ, but today he wonders why they don’t own a car like his friend Colby, why he doesn’t have an iPod like the other boys on the bus, or why do they always get off in the dirty part of town? His grandma, far from being daunted by such innocent but perceptive questions, gives CJ encouraging answers, helping him see beauty and fun in their routine and the world around him. It’s a great book to teach children about the inequalities of life and about helping those less fortunate than us.

If you think classics are a class apart, introduce them to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory By Roald Dahl


Image Source: penguin

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is a complete joyride. It has drama, tragedy, comedy, wonder, as well as, a happy ending!

It begins when 11-years-old Charlie Bucket finds a golden ticket to Mr. Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory. He and four other kids get a rare tour of the chocolate factory where they meet the Oompa Loompas, see a chocolate fountain, and many such marvels. While the other kids get eliminated by funny and painful means, Charlie wins the chocolate factory and is to succeed Mr. Wonka in running the factory.

Kids will love the bizarre blended with the beautiful in this book.

To spark their imagination, introduce them to Ish By Peter H. Reynolds


Image Source: goodreads


Does your kid love to showcase his creativity?

Then she will definitely identify with Ramon, the boy who loved to draw. Anytime. Anything. Anywhere.

Drawing is what made Ramon happy. But one unkind remark by Ramon’s older brother, Leon, turns Ramon’s cheerful sketches into a bleak exercise. Luckily his little sister, Marisol, opens his eyes to something a lot more valuable than getting things just “right” and inspires him to draw again. This time, Ramon draws tree-ish, fish-ish, sun-ish, peace-ish, poem-ish and much more.

Ish inspires the artist within all of us to keep drawing, writing, and capturing the world with creativity!

To teach them generosity & gratitude, get a copy of The Quilt Maker’s Gift By Jeff Brumbeau


Image Source: goodreads


An exceptionally talented quilt maker, a King who is used to receiving many gifts throughout the year and a battle of wills between the two. Will the quilt maker, wishing to give her quilts to the poor, give in to the King instead? Will the King accept the quilt maker’s terms to get a quilt? 

The Quilt Maker’s Gift is a perfect book to teach its young readers the importance of generosity and gratitude and the joy of giving.

To impart a lesson in empathy, there’s Hey Little Ant by Phillip and Hannah Hoose


Image Source: goodreads


Does size determine value?

Hey Little Ant addresses this question with utmost charm. A boy is about to squish a tiny ant without a second thought. The ant stops the boy in his tracks and asserts that he deserves to live as much as the boy. He asks the boy “If you were me and I were you, what would you want me to do?” The reader is asked to ponder over the question if by being small, the ant’s needs, its life are less important than the human’s.

To discover more about geography and world culture, I recommend If You Lived Here: Houses of the World By Giles Laroche

Image Source: goodreads

Our homes are a reflection of ourselves!

What better way to explore new worlds and get insight into different people than to look at unique homes from around the world and discover fascinating facts about how people live and have lived across centuries.

If you lived in the mountains of southern Spain, your bedroom might be carved out of a mountain. If you lived in a village in South Africa, the outside of your house might tell the story of your family. And if you lived in a floating green house in the Netherlands, you could rotate your house to watch both the sunrise and sunset.

Giles Laroche tells us why each home was constructed the way in which it was – one captivating fact after another. Then allows us to imagine what it would be like to live in homes so different from ours.

So, visit a library or a book store or order a copy online, but get one or more of these books and witness your kids’ faces turning into mirrors of fascination and their imagination soaring along with the summer sun.

Happy Reading!


Also read: 5 Books To Read With Your Kids This Summer Vacation

Explore the entire collection of articles: Books To Read


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