Shelly Boyum Breen–the author, creator, and prototype of Shelly Bean–grew up in Brainerd, Minnesota as a girl who like to play.
Where do your kids fall in the summer reading spectrum? Whether they love to read or hate it or are somewhere in between, there is probably a program out there for them. If they are ambitious, they can participate in several. There is no rule that kids can’t use the same books for several programs.
A couple years ago, I did some research on the reality of the income-based achievement gap and how parents can Increase their Child’s Chances in School with a few Simple, Budget-Friendly Habits. Summer reading is another place where the achievement gap grows. However, the fix is offering your kids easy access to a lot of books and empowering them to select their own reading materials.This is where summer reading programs can come in handy.
The following are few programs we found plus our own:
MLK Monday – So, what’s closed today? Or, perhaps more importantly, what’s open and where can I get the kids out of the house? We’ve got ideas both indoor and out plus a couple of fun family events to observe the day:
- Rev Dr Martin Luther King, Jr Day 2017 | Powderhorn Park, Minneapolis, 11am-2pm • Celebrate with a community meal, theatre performances and art activities.
- Dr Martin Luther King Holiday | Conway Recreation Center, St Paul, 2-5pm
- Rev Dr Martin Luther King, Jr Celebration | Dr MLK Recreation Center, Minneapolis, 6:30-7:30pm
- Snowman Making Contest & Winter Concert | Silverwood Park, St Anthony • 1-4:30pm • Come build your best snow creature, then warm up with cocoa and an indoor concert courtesy Bunny Clogs.
- Find your nearest Twin Cities-area sledding hill.
- Find your local Twin Cities-area outdoor ice skating rink.
- Como Park Ski Center | St Paul, 10am-6pm • Special MLK hours for cross-country skiing, downhill skiing and snowboarding.
- Go snow tubing with special hours at Theodore Wirth Park ($10/pp) or Columbia Golf Course | Minneapolis.
- Tail Time | Wild Rumpus Books, Minneapolis, 10:30am • Arrive early if you want to get a decent spot. Stick around to see how many critters (yes, animal critters) you can spot slinking around the store!
- PolarPalooza | Como Park Zoo & Conservatory, St Paul, 10am-4pm • Educational games and activities.
- Behind the Scenes: Research Labs | Science Museum of MN, 12-4pm • Included with museum admission, $12.95-$18.95.
- Mill City Museum | Minneapolis, 10am-5pm • Special holiday hours – see our tips at 10 Things For Kids: Mill City Museum.
- Bakken Museum | Minneapolis, 10am-4pm (special holiday hours), $5-$10/pp
- Preschool Open Play | The Blast Indoor Playground, Eagan Community Center, 9:30-11am • A variety of equipment is available to play in the gym as well as play time in the Blast Indoor playground. $4/child ages 1-5.
- Find MORE preschool open gym and open play times.
- Trolls | Riverview Theater, Minneapolis, 1 & 5pm • $2/pp plus awesome popcorn!
- Half-price Open Swim | Great River Water Park, St Paul, 10:30am-8:30pm (activity pool and waterslides open 10:30-noon)
- Find drop-in crafting opportunities for kids of all ages in our Winter Survival Guide.
I would be lying if I didn’t admit that I was a little star-struck when I first met Belinda Jensen. But she admits herself that she is a science nerd–and has always been one.
As a meterologist, Belinda gets to meet with second-graders and has learned first hand about their anxiety over the weather. This is where being a mom herself collides with being a science nerd.
The Mayo Clinic has done research about how to help kids. Bel took that information from Mayo and applied it. She could do something to help kids.
That’s how Bel the Weather Girl was born.
My most beloved children’s literature characters are on stage for the next month.
Elephant and Piggie.
Kennedy Center’s Theater for Young Audiences on Tour has brought them here in a partnership with Children’s Theatre Company.
Whether you have a kiddo who loves books or one who is a reluctant reader, you will want to check this theatrical experience out!
“I’ve always been a huge fan of series. It turns somebody into having a reading habit, going back to the same characters.”
-Erin Soderberg Downing
Erin Soderberg Downing is a fun mom! You will hear about how she is a mother to three. Sometimes four and sometimes five. And how that alone was the inspiration for her popular book series, The Quirks and Puppy Pirates.
We have affiliate links to the books mentioned in the show notes below.
This week on BookHounds, Gianna talks about some unconventional ideas for great FamilyLit. Each of these books will be enjoyed by the whole family. You can read these books over and over without needing to bang your head against a wall.
FamilyLit Show Notes Below
Join our Facebook group FFTC BookHounds for Facebook Live Chats and interaction with other BookHounds, including REAL LIFE authors!
BookHounds Invites Season 1
Ella and Penguin Stick Together
Stephen and Trisha Speed Shaskan
Wake Up, Island!
Monster & Son
Molly Beth Griffin
Rhoda’s Rock Hunt
The Case of Summertime Books
This month we have had a blast partnering with the author of Ella and Penguin Stick Together Megan Maynor. She knows and loves her children’s books, and she has some great suggestions for you to enjoy together with your kids. You can learn more about her in these two posts– Meet Megan Maynor and BookHounds #1 Ella and Penguin Stick Together.
Reading picture books together as a family is so important. At our first BookHounds meeting, Megan mentioned the importance of picture literacy. It’s important to understand what is happening in the pictures. This is the beginning of discerning irony in plotlines and understanding people’s emotions.
It also helps us to use our imaginations even as adults.
Read Aloud Tip for January:
in one book this month, take time to enjoy the pictures before plunging into the words. Read More