Tips for reading with children during the summer vacation


No plans to take a trip this summer vacation? Here are ten ideas the foundation has devised to help you and your family to get out and about with the help of some good books, naturally.

1. Read a book that teaches you and your kids more about your own country

Experience more about your country with the help of a good book and other materials. Pick up an atlas or a globe if you have one. Look where, next to where, far from where your country lies. With a map of your country you can talk with your child about the places you have visited and those you would like to visit. Use the internet of the library to learn more about these places. Read about national parks, historic places and museums and revive your country for the family.

2. Visit a local museum

Local museums are popular destinations among tourists. Why not for locals? To get into the mood of any museum visit let your child read a book that has to do with the collection of the museum that you are going to visit. For example if you are planning a visit to the Archaeological Museum let the child read up on Indians. At the museum the child can ask the guide which book they recommend on the topic. This way your child will get more out of the trip.

3. Visit a historic site

Is there a historic place you and your family have not visited yet? Look for information at local museums, or library. They can also give you information on books and materials available about the history and historic places in your country. Make it a complete adventure for you and your family.

4. Plan a fun relaxing day

A vacation is not a vacation if you do not take some time to relax and enjoy life. Go to the beach or go on a picnic outside or go camping. Let the family choose a book, magazine or newspaper which ever they prefer and give to them as a gift, as long as it is something to read. Share thoughts and ideas: “this book is boring!”, “Hear this!”, “Did you know…”, “Who can guess.”

5. Enjoy nature and the environment

What better time than a vacation to take a brisk walk, observe the flora and fauna, enjoy the outdoors. Even if you do not go out everywhere you can enjoy everything nature has to offer near your own home. Is there a park or a small slice of nature in your neighborhood? When going on excursion in nature take enough water and a snack, comfortable shoes and resort wear. Take with you a book on birds or any other local fauna or flora, a binoculars and a loop. Observe everything around you, read, learn and get to know more.

6. An afternoon of story telling

Do something special for you and the family. Make a campfire (small) in the yard or where it is permitted. For snacks stick marshmallows on a long stick and let it toast on the fire. Each person present has to tell a short story (no longer than 10 minutes). Invent your own story, read or listen to entertain the others. Give each person a chance to come up with their story. Tell them in advance about the activity giving them a chance to prepare and look for inspiration.

7. Travel into space among the stars

For some people vacations means staying out late and observe the stars. If you can sleep outside, in the garden get a mattress or hammock, look up and tell stories till you fall asleep. Who saw a shooting star? Is it really moving? Where is it going? You can also look up information ahead of time about planets, stars, moon and comets… There are a lot of books on this topic. Read and discover the universe together.

8. Tell stories from around the world

Plan an afternoon of story telling. If you have small children you will be the one telling the story. If your children are older you can let the whole family participate. What better way to travel around the world than reading legends from different countries. Let your child choose the story. If he or she has a country of preference you can help him/her choose the right book at his/her level. Remember: The idea is to have a good time!

9. Travel in time

Put your daily routine aside for one moment, read a book about time travel with your child. You can ask the library for suggestions on the topic. To finalize this project make a time capsule. To make one you will need a strong container to protect the contents, such as, a can of milk or paint that closes tightly. Let your child choose the material that he/she wishes to put in it. Ideas: a newspaper, paint, book or photo. Deliberate together for who the capsule is going (it can be for your child in 10 years or for an unknown person in the future). Your child can write a letter for the future owner of the capsule. Stick a label on it saying “Do not open before 2020.” Hide the capsule in a place which is not frequented in the home. Maybe on an old book case in the garage.

10. Watch a play or movie based on a book

There are appropriate plays and movies for children based on books for children. Find out at local theatres and cinemas what their vacation program for children is. You can also get a DVD and organize an evening of movies at home. It is recommended that you and your child read the book before watching the play or movie. This way you will have something to talk about afterward: “What did you like more the book or the movie?” What did you think about the acting in the play?” How would you have done it?”

A contribution of “Fundacion Papiamente”.” One of the foundations tasks is to continuously share important articles with the media which serve as guidance for parents, caregivers and teachers and thus try to reach all those who take the development of the children seriously and want to do something significant for their future and the future of Aruba.

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