Happy Friday! Vivian here to discuss summer reading with you. First off, I will confess that I haven’t done as much reading this summer as I would like. I find that summer tends to be busier for me, filled with travels to visit family, the camp/work juggling act, and adventures around town. I am happy to report, however, that my kids have done a ton of reading!
With one child about to start 4th grade and another about to start 1st, they are at very different places with their reading abilities and interests. I decided to create projects that relate to where each of them is at at this particular point. Rather than doing the typical “here’s a list of what he/she read this summer” layouts, I’ve put together some more unique twists on summer reading in the hope that these projects will inspire you to think outside the typical summer reading box.
First up is a layout I created about my son’s reading this summer. I challenged him to read twenty books this summer and he happily took on my challenge. What’s impressed me most about his reading this summer is not the sheer volume of what he’s read, but how his reading choices have reflected and helped to grow his diverse interests. I’ll show you the layout first and then discuss some design ideas.
I have two design takeaways for you from this layout. First, play around with using text patterned paper as a background. This technique works well with a small-scale patterned print, like the one I used here. The text builds on the layout’s theme and adds interest. Second, try creating smaller canvases within a larger canvas. I wanted to use a lot of embellishments on this layout (a whole lot if you are familiar with my usual style!), but didn’t want it to be overwhelming. A good solution was to break the layout down into four smaller canvases, each of which tells a discrete part of the story. By housing a few embellishments within each canvas, I was able to use a lot without having it look like quite so much. (Okay, it does look like a lot compared to my usual layouts, but hopefully you get what I mean!)
Now for my second project…while my daughter is a good reader, she is not yet a confident reader. She is perfectly capable of reading and understanding chapter books, but their length and lack of pictures petrifies her. She’s started and stopped several different books this summer (Charlotte’s Web, a couple of American Girl books, etc.), not because of lack of comprehension, but because the task of reading an entire chapter book seems daunting. To spur her on to persevere and develop confidence in her reading abilities, I made her a fun and girl-y coupon pack out of clamshell packaging from an adhesive refill. Every time she reads an entire chapter book she can redeem one of the coupons. This may fall under the category of “summer and fall reading,” as she has yet to redeem a coupon, but I am hoping this does the trick!
Here’s the coupon pack:
Now, for a close-up of the coupons themselves:
This is a really easy project to make! The clamshell packaging I used had a 2” X 4” center compartment, so I typed up my coupons three to a page in a 4” X 6” Word document and printed them out on two pieces of cardstock cut to 4” X 6”. I cut them apart and embellished each with a thin strip of patterned paper or a die-cut and added stickers and/or other embellishments. I finished the coupons by rounding the corners with a corner punch. After I made the coupons, I cut a piece of patterned paper to fit the inside back of the clamshell packaging, put that and the coupons inside, tied a piece of ribbon through the hole at the top, and covered the knot with a fun textured button adhered with a glue dot. It took me less than half an hour to make the whole thing! Keep your fingers crossed for me that it will serve its intended purpose!
So…what will you create to remember or promote summer reading?
(Oh, and if you missed it, you might want to check out Autumn Baldwin’s July 15th Summertime Daily post, as it’s on a related topic. I won’t tell you what topic…but here’s a clue: we could refer to it as the “blog post that shall not be named.” :))