Friday, June 27, 2014

Thankful Thursdays - 6/26/2014 - Summer Reading

Do you have a Middle or High Schooler? Or at least a child near that age who likes to read A LOT?! We do, and *SOMETIMES* they get in trouble for not getting their chores done. . . usually because they've been reading. 

It can be a real challenge to help your 5th-young 9th graders choose what to read over the summer. There is such a tremendous growth, both physically and maturity wise that happens to our children during these Middle School years. I’ve always been open to suggestions from other parents. It can narrow down the vast sea of books to cull through.

I am thankful that Arlene (& her older sister Emily) love to read . . . but it can be a real balancing act between getting them to read quality books, getting their chores done, and still having time for outdoor summer activities. That doesn’t even include the time spent on 4-H projects-LOL!

I thought I’d just share a couple things that Arlene (just finished 8th grade) has been reading in the past couple weeks. 

Oh, and about those chores . . . encourage your children of ALL ages to get their “to do” list done in the mornings, so they can enjoy their Summer afternoons. Arlene enjoys spending her afternoon  on the front porch swing reading.

So what has Arlene been reading?

How about this one? A History of Fashion and Costume: The Twentieth Century. Inside she found one of the patterns she borrowed from my Mom! 
Arlene has been studying  how styles change for a while. For the past 2 years, she has sewn a vintage pattern for her 4-H outfit.

summer reading, middle schoolOr this gem she found at the library last week: 2nd Stories: A Hoosier photographer explores what’s upstairs, on top, and overhead. (This one is mostly pictures, but a few of them have stories to go with them. I find this fascinating for two reasons: 1- Arlene is looking at how other photographers frame their photos, and 2- she’s getting out the state map and looking up the locations!)

Here’s one sure to be a hit with your kids: MARVEL’s Volume 1 of ‘The Wonderful Wizard of OZ’ graphic novel.

Now about those High Schoolers. . .

high school summer readingIf your older/mature teens like a great story, and staying in it, you should have them check out books by Chuck Black. These are good for about 6th grade and up. Chuck has written a whole series of ‘Kingdom’ books that are an allegory of the Bible (set in the time of knights and ladies.) His newest book, Cloak of the Light is geared more towards High Schoolers, but your mature Middle Schoolers would probably enjoy it. Emily just finished it and now Arlene is reading it. Em’s description is “Deadpool from Marvel meets the Bible.”

college-prep reading, nursingEmily’s reading is a little heavier than Arlene’s. Since Em (10th/11th grade) plans to go into nursing, I got the TEAS practice book from the library, so she can try out the test and then I can help her identify which areas she needs to focus on next school year. The TEAS test for nursing is different from the SAT or ACT, but we know that practicing the TEAS test will help her with standardized testing of any kind. I’m really thankful for our library . . . but Em might tell you otherwise when she sits down to take the practice test!

public school vs home schoolingEmily is also going to read Dumbing Us Down by John Taylor Gatto. I read it a couple years ago and think it will be a solid comparison between her education, and what happens in most public schools today.

On Em's night stand, I found her Bible, a hymnal, a journal, and Anne of Ingleside.

I'm not sure Emily will get as much reading time as she likes this summer, but she'll have enough.

Throughout the summer I’m sure Arlene will also be reading some field guides, and at least one of the Anne of Green Gables series books. I’ll be thankful again when she’s reading our Betty Crocker Cookbook! Yum.

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