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Tips to Create Everyday Reading Adventures

Photo by Chris Lawton on Unsplash

Summer is in full swing, and there are so many great activities in Philly for families to enjoy. Did you know there are summer activities that can improve our children’s reading skills?

Everything from a sunny day at the beach to a quick stop to get ice cream can become a way to keep your reading promise to a loved one.

The first way to do so is simple. Many activities require some form of transportation (car, bus, Uber ride, etc.). Make sure your young reader has a book handy for the ride. You can use the travel time to read aloud until you arrive at your destination. This is one great way to avoid the summer slide, and it keeps younger children occupied during those antsy car rides to their favorite activities.

The second way to incorporate reading into your summer activities requires a bit more creativity, but it is so much fun. Find easily accessible locations that resemble the settings in your child’s favorite book. While at the zoo, you can read a book that features animals. Ask your child if they can find all of the animals at the zoo that are in the story they’ve read. If a book features someone playing a sport, like baseball, then you guys can read the story at a baseball field in your neighborhood.

Even if you don’t have a book handy, you can practice reading skills at unique locations. For example, on a trip to purchase groceries, you can ask your child to find items that start with each letter of the alphabet:

“That basket has apples.

“Mom, can we have three bananas?

“I can see a bag of carrots.

There are so many exciting places where you can include fun ways to keep your reading promise. Here are three of my favorites:

  • Treehouse Books is always a great place to find some really good stories and enjoy a day of reading. Make sure you check out their selection of free books for young readers.
  • The Please Touch Museum is a fun spot to check out new attractions and show off your literacy skills with the family. The calendar of events consistently includes something new and exciting.
  • Philadelphia Free Streets includes all types of fun activities for a pedestrian-friendly stroll that begins at City Hall and makes its way through the heart of North Philly. I’ll be located at Broad & Callowhill with coloring activities and story-time throughout the day. Stop by and say hi!

The summer is a great time to create lasting memories with loved ones. We all have a sense of nostalgia about the fun and exciting times we had as children. We can help our children create memories of their own.

Bring your camera so you can take awesome pictures!


John Butler, known as Cousin John, is a Philadelphia native and sports journalist who has turned his passion for writing into a series of children’s books. The Chase books are filled with adventure and feature characters of color that all children can relate to. John’s mission is to introduce young readers to the world of literacy, while instilling valuable life lessons. Learn more about the Chase series here.

Follow him on Instagram at  @_ChaseBooks and on Facebook @ChaseDoesItAll.