While many slides are fun for children, the “summer slide” in reading is way less enjoyable – and often detrimental to budding readers.

The summer slide occurs when students, especially those with less access to educational resources, lose some of the academic skills they gained during the previous school year.

To combat this slide, Clemson University’s College of Education and its Reading Recovery and Early Literacy Center have produced a video emphasizing the importance of summer reading. Produced in cooperation with Clemson Video Services, the video is being released in coordination with the July 12 National Summer Learning Day, a national advocacy day emphasizing the importance of keeping kids learning, safe and healthy every summer so that they are ready to succeed when they return to school.

In the video, educators and advocates from Clemson’s College of Education, the International Literacy AssociationDabo’s All In Team Foundation and Scholastic, the global children’s publishing, education, and media company, outlined the import of fighting the summer slide, as regresses in summer reading can be cumulative over the course of several years and cause children to fall further behind.

The video also emphasizes the importance of parental involvement in children’s reading experiences, offering several tips to encourage summer reading:

  • Read to your child.
  • Ask your child to read to you.
  • Support your child’s selection of reading materials that match his or her interests.
  • Encourage your child’s efforts to read a variety of materials – books, magazines, comic books, etc.
  • Help your child participate in summer reading programs in local libraries or other places.

The video is part of ongoing efforts at Clemson to promote summer literacy, including the annual Tigers Read initiative that provides books to children throughout South Carolina to read during the summer. Tigers Read is a joint effort between the Reading Recovery and Early Literacy Center, Dabo’s All In Team Foundation and Scholastic.