21 Awesome Chalk Activities to Keep Kids Learning in Summer!

Summer is here which means it is time to get outside and play! We have been spending as much time as possible out in the sun and my daughter has a newfound fascination with chalk. There are so many ways to use chalk to teach and reinforce important concepts to kids, from letters and numbers to colors, shapes and more! In an effort to keep the learning going this summer, I decided to round up some of the best learning activities that use chalk so we would have plenty to keep us busy!

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5 Things Experts Don’t Tell You About Reading to Kids

reading to kidsWe live in a world of Instagram and Pinterest, where “perfect” families make “perfect” crafts and have “perfect” lives. Let’s be serious. We post the good pictures on social media, but how many outtakes did it take to get that perfect shot? Reading to kids falls under this umbrella too. I have posted photos on my Instagram of my daughter and I curled up and reading together. And that totally happens! But I will not lie to you. There are definitely days where that perfect picture is NOT what happened!

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Easter Board Books for Little Ones

Easter is coming! I love all of the fun books available to welcome the Spring season and celebrate the Easter holiday. Whether or not you are religious, there are a wide variety of fun Easter board books to introduce the symbols and traditions of the holiday to the littlest of bookworms! There are books from some of your child’s favorite characters, as well as some familiar children’s book authors. I hope you find a new favorite to share with your youngest readers this holiday!

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Activating Prior Knowledge

When it comes to teaching reading, activating prior knowledge is one of my favorite strategies. By using past experiences, or tapping into knowledge they already have, you can help kids to comprehend the stories and texts that you are reading. You can easily model this strategy for your kids while you are reading aloud to them, while also encouraging conversation. This can be done with children as young as toddlers!

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Hanukkah Board Books For The Littlest Bookworms

best-hanukkah-board-booksAs Hanukkah approaches, don’t forget to include the youngest readers in your family! There are so many great Hanukkah board books to introduce kids to all of the traditions and fun of the holiday. Familiar characters including Elmo and Curious George celebrate the holiday with their friends while interactive lift the flap books entertain the youngest of readers.  Below is a list of great board books to introduce young infants and toddlers to traditions ranging from playing with dreidels to lighting the menorah. (This post contains affiliate links. In order to support this blog and continue providing free content, I may receive a commission from purchases you make through the links in this post).

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Best Christmas Board Books

best-christmas-board-booksDon’t forget the little ones when you are buying your holiday books! There are a wide variety of wonderful Christmas board books for babies and toddlers to enjoy during the holiday season. From touch and feel interactive books to sweet stories introducing them to traditions and symbols, you are sure to find something for your child! While several of the classic Christmas stories are also available in board book formats, I tried to keep this post to mostly books aimed at very young children. (This post contains affiliate links. In order to support this blog and continue providing free content, I may receive a commission from purchases you make through the links in this post).

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Great Books for Babies!

great-books-for-babiesMany parents may think “Why should I start reading to my baby when she can’t even understand the story?”. There is a misconception that reading to kids only revolves around the story and their understanding of it. But there are so many important reasons to read to babies, starting with the fact that they will learn from the very beginning that books are awesome!

Reading to babies shows them:

  • Reading is a fun activity
  • How to treat books
  • To look at the pictures
  • Reading time is a special time

There are many great books out there that can keep babies and toddlers engaged and interested. My daughter has enjoyed the following books in particular. (This post contains affiliate links).

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Reading Aloud from the Beginning

reading-aloud-from-the-beginningMy parents have told my sister and I throughout our lives that they read to us every night from the first night we were home from the hospital. When I got to grad school and was researching literacy practices, I found that reading aloud to children from the very beginning is a large factor in getting children to enjoy reading. My sister and I are both avid readers (thanks Mom and Dad!). People no longer like to help us move because the amount of books is ridiculous. It was important to me that I continue this practice with my daughter. I read the same book to her on her first night home that my parents read to us (One Minute Fairy Tales by Shari Lewis).

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