Every year at around the same time it’s the same feeling, “I can’t believe it’s the end of August already.” It’s been a lovely summer and July was spent in Toronto mostly at the splash pad or at home making smoothies and hanging out with friends. August was spent on the move visiting family in India. That meant music, family and delicious food. For the kids that also meant late nights with cousins and really no regular routine.
My little one graduated Kindergarten in June and with her birthday at the end of the year I know she is always going to be one of the younger kids in her class. That’s one of the reasons reading and writing was a struggle last year. The other reason is that she’s such an active girl that sitting down and concentrating on a single task for more than 10 mins is a lot for her to handle.
So this summer while we were on the move I encouraged her to read every chance we got. Whether it was the road signs in India or car licence plates as we travelled around New Delhi to visit family. And it was last week when she read her favourite Dr Seuss to her grandmother in India, I knew we had turned a corner.
With back to school and Grade 1 looming ahead of us it’s time to gradually slide back into the school routine. I also want to continue the momentum my little one has gathered over the summer and encourage her interest in reading. So here we are.
Reading Strategies For Back To School
Normalize daily routine
This is the biggest hurdle with my kids especially with our trip to India and the expected jetlag on our return. And when you’ve got used to sleepovers with cousins and playing outside late into the night, regular bedtimes are a struggle. The temptation of being read to every evening seems to be working though, and the bonus for my little one – she wants to be the one reading aloud!
Regular meetings on Ooka Island
I was introduced to this app a few months ago by a friend and I am impressed. For starters it has helped my little one get comfortable with recognizing words and and connecting them into sentences. Since this app is loaded onto the family iPad she also feels like she is getting her quota of screen time. My 10 year old created a schedule for herself over the summer juggling Minecraft, videos on YouTube and Slytherio – yes, we are that family – and my youngest felt she needed a screen time schedule too even though she barely watches TV! Ooka Island with it’s combination of learning and play was a great compromise.
Ooka Island is a research based reading app that helps children grow their reading and learning skills. I like that real-time progress report cards are generated to provide a detailed picture of how my child’s doing. I also love that my little one can learn and play activity-based games like jumping over rocks and skateboarding down a mountain. Exactly what my very adventurous girl would do in real life. Yikes!
And with it’s recent feature in Apple’s Education Early Years Literacy category coupled with it’s capability of encouraging skills till a Grade 2 level I can see us all on Ooka Island for a while.
#RaiseAReader Courtesy Ooka Island
As a part of getting kids ready for going back to school, Ooka Island is offering one of my lovely readers a full year’s subscription to Ooka Island FREE. This prize is worth CA$109 (plus taxes) and is available in US and Canada (excluding Quebec). Giveaway ends September 6th, 2016.
You could win this amazing prize by entering below:
Disclaimer: I am a member of the #RaiseAReader Ooka Island Ambassador team and get special perks as a part of this program. The opinion and narrative in this article is entirely mine.