Trail Tales – Summer Reading Activities for Elementary School Children

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Trail Tales - Summer Reading for Elementary School Children - Threaded Together*Trail Tales is a summer reading program that I created for a school project. I took the most important pieces and created a summer reading program to share with our readers. Be sure to check back soon for book recommendations, a list of great activities to complete together during the summer and more.*

According to my children, we have five weeks of school left until summer. My children love school and love learning but we also love the lazy days of summer.  We fill our summer days with sleeping in, traveling, and learning time.


Back up a minute.

Did she say learning time? In the summer?

Why, yes I did. I got the name from my sister and we have been doing learning time for several summers. I have tried both a more formal schedule with our summer learning and an informal schedule. I prefer the informal schedule where we include learning time into our daily routine as it works for us. Learning time includes practice in all subjects and lots of reading. We participate in the summer reading program at the library and I throw in some of my own activities.

Some of you who know me know that I just finished up a Masters in Library and Information Studies. One of my final projects was to create a summer reading program. The program centers around the fact that we live in Colorado. Summer is such an amazing time to get out and explore whether it is in your backyard or on the trail. I can’t wait to do this with my kids this summer so I have decided to share parts of this project with you.

Why Summer Reading?

There are a number of academic articles that speak to the benefits of summer reading; however, there is one common thread to the success and that is parental involvement. Studies have shown that summer reading interventions are more effective with parent and teacher involvement so it is important for me to not just tell my children to read but to also engage in the activities and reading with them.

Trail Tales

Trail Tales will help you get outside and enjoy what your backyard or local trails have to offer.  Each of the recommended books and activities are all about nature. Learn about spirals that we see in nature. Read a book about a young teen who has to survive in the wilderness on his own. There are lots of outdoor adventures waiting for you!

Learn more about Trail Tales!

Trail Tales Overview 

Summer Reading Book List, Picture Books and Nonfiction - Threaded Together

Picture Book and Nonfiction Recommendations – You will find a list of picture books that encourage exploring nature or getting outside.  This list also includes some guidebooks and tracking books to help you discover what is around you.

Summer Reading Book List - Chapter Books - Threaded Together

Chapter Book Recommendations – This is a list of recommended chapter books for varying ages and interests.

Trail Tales - Summer Reading Activities - Threaded Together

Activities – We share nine different activities that you can complete this summer. They include things like nature scavenger hunts and journaling about what you find in nature. Included are links to two printables to use during your adventures.

One Response

  1. Lillian Barfield
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    I am so proud of you for receiving your Masters. Your mom up dated me on you and Marissa when we had the walk for Steps for Stephanie. Jessica gets her Masters May 9 th from Vanderbilt. Keep in touch. You and your sister are so talented!

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