Our kids are (sort of) ready to go back to school next week, so it’s time for us to wrap-up our summer reading checklists and journals. It has been an eventful summer, but we’ve been so happy to have PBS Kids Summer Reading materials to help us throughout the season. My 13-year-old keeps his list on Google Docs, but my younger kids are still all about their reading logs and incentives programs.

Thanks to PBS Kids, I was able to throw a “Summer Reading Safari” party for my younger kids and their friends. We chose to have a pool party, because it’s summer, and what’s better than reading after splashing around at our local pool?

Summer Reading with PBS Kids

We talked about books and what the kids were reading. Some of the kids were reading way above age level, whereas others were still firmly into the “I Can Read” books. Whatever age or grade-level the kids were going into, they were all excited about reading everything from best-selling series like “Lemony Snicket,” “Harry Potter,” and “Percy Jackson” to classics like “Anne of Green Gables” and read-alouds with their parents.

I’m so thankful that PBS Kids made so many resources available to help us encourage our kids to read and keep track of their books. Luckily we also had a brand-new library open in downtown Silver Spring that many of the kids at our party were thrilled to visit and check books out of this summer.

Summer may be over, but here are so great year-round PBS resources for those of you who want to make sure your kids read for pleasure year-round:

  • PBS Bookfinder: This database allows you to search by age, theme, and type to find the just-right book for your child.
  • PBS Parents articles: I love these posts by educators and experts to help me with any educational issues my kids are having, like this great article about New Reader No-Nos.
  • Reading and Language:  There are fabulous activities and games for kids of all ages, and many are specifically tied to PBS Kids shows that help with literacy development and reading.

Disclosure: As a PBS Kids VIP, I received $50 Target card as well as Harper Collins “I Can Read” books and PBS Kids reading journals, charts, checklists, and other materials to distribute and throw during my party. No other compensation was provided.