Natasha Cosgrove, Ellie McGillen, and Ella Sparks, graduates of Oak Park’s Lincoln Elementary School and winners of the fall 2016 Reading Olympics

By Natasha Cosgrove, Ellie McGillen, and Ella Sparks

The authors are graduates of Oak Park’s Lincoln Elementary School and winners of the fall 2016 Reading Olympics, a partner program with Oak Park Elementary School District 97, River Forest School District 90, the Oak Park Public Library, and the River Forest Public Library, as well as several private schools. In three competitions each year, teams of fifth graders answer questions about books from the Reading Olympics reading list.

It’s 7 am, and kids all over the country whine as their parents tell them to start reading. But those same kids, the ones who grudgingly picked up books and started reading, were the kids who made the honor roll, graduated high school and college, and went on to become successful and happy people.

You may be thinking, it’s summer! I’m not going to do homework! But this article might change your mind. Continuing to read over the summer can help you to keep up your reading skills over the summer while having fun!

We understand that for some kids reading is a treat, and for others it isn’t as enjoyable. Usually, summer is a break from schoolwork, but, even so, you shouldn’t stop reading. You may be the smartest kid in your class, but next year, the kids who did their reading will easily outsmart you, and you will have forgotten what you learned. If kids fall behind on their summer reading every year, they could experience learning loss, and will be two years behind their classmates by sixth grade. Reading is not just good for your brain, but it’s also good for your imagination!

We love reading because it brings us into a place where we can escape from our insecurities and laugh, cry, and smile with the characters we will learn to love. Every book is a doorway to a new world, which can sometimes even make us happier than we are. When you are feeling unhappy, melancholy, disappointed, or bored, take a break from everything and just read a book. It’ll help, we promise.  

So, in conclusion, summer reading helps in every way it could: better grades, more fun, and, of course, less boredom. So, remember to read over the summer, and visit the library often. We hope you have a wonderful, book-full summer!

Kids’ summer reading starts Wednesday, June 7 >