Reading over summer and winter vacation is important.

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Up, Up and Away
Although your children may believe that any school break is a break from learning, you know better. Reading regularly over the summer and winter holidays will ensure that all their hard work during the school year doesn't go to waste. Jump-start their imaginations with a good book and show them how they can travel to exciting places without ever leaving home.

As a teacher, Nancy says for every month children are out of school, they can regress that many months in their reading abilities. Although light summer reading may not push them sufficiently ahead of their class for the coming fall, "if they read, a lot of time they'll keep status quo, which is what you want," Nancy says.

Thom also feels ready telling kids it's important to read isn't enough to get them hooked; reading with them every day matters more. "Reading with them demonstrates in an intimate and physical way that reading is a worthwhile activity."