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Pittsburgh Parenting Blog by Sewickley Academy

Sewickley Academy: Resource Blog for Parents

Summer Reads: Tales of Travel

Summer Reads - Tales of TravelAs families wrap up the school year and consider plans for June through August, the phrase “summer reading” is inevitably uttered. Schools, libraries, and bookstores all promote summer reading like crazy. But we promise, it’s not just for the sales or a hollow attempt to keep brains sharp over the summer. Access to choice reading over summer shows an increase in both fluency and pleasure reading in the future. This results in higher test scores and more pleasure reading into adulthood creating well-rounded adults. A synopsis of this research can be found here.

Join us, your loyal Sewickley Academy librarians, as we feature some summer reading picks over the next few weeks. We hope to inspire a love of reading in parents and students, and offer some guidance on finding just the right book for your student this summer.

We know that summer is a time for relaxing, wandering, and going on adventures. So why not add reading to the mix? Whether you are traveling on an airplane to another continent, venturing into the woods to build a fort in your backyard, or jumping through a wormhole to time travel, these books will satisfy your craving for far off times and places.


"Are We There Yet?" by Dan Santat 

Reading Level: Pre-K and up

Road trips are never easy, especially when they take you through medieval jousting matches, lands with dinosaurs, and the future where cars fly. Who knows? Maybe your trip to grandma’s house will take you on an unexpected detour, too.


"Time Warp Trio" by Jon Scieszka 

Reading Level: Grade 3 and up

Follow three seemingly normal kids from Brooklyn as they travel through time and space. When Joe’s magician uncle gifts him “The Book,” Joe and his friends are transported to the distant past and future in this hilarious series. The only way to return home is to find “The Book” in whatever time and place they have traveled to. Like the Trio’s adventures that bounce throughout history and the future, there’s no need to read these in order. Where will you choose to go with the "Time Warp Trio?"


"Around the World in 80 Days" by Jules Verne

Reading Level: Grade 6 and up

How about a classic this summer? Jules Verne, largely considered to be the pioneer of science fiction, crafts an amazing race-against-time adventure that will grip audiences of all ages. Remember a time before taking airplanes to reach your summer vacation, and take an elephant instead.


"The Girl from Everywhere" by Heidi Heilig

Reading Level: Grade 8 and up

As long as there’s a map for it, Nix and her father can sail there. Across time and oceans, Nix has seen Ancient China, African jungles, and mythical lands and made friends everywhere along the way. There’s just one map they don’t have, and it’s the map that will take them back to Nix’s mom.


"An Abundance of Katherines" By John Green 

Reading Level: Grade 9 and up

With $10,000 in his pocket, Colin is desperate to get away from Katherine. Nineteen different Katherines, to be exact, and they all dumped him. A road-trip with his quirky best friend is just what Colin needs to get his mind off the Katherines, and you’re in for a treat when you join in on their adventure.


"The Haters" by Jesse Andrews

Reading Level: Grade 10 and up

Jazz camp is turning out to be pretty lame, so three young musicians bail, hit the road, and head south with big dreams of going on a successful tour of late night gigs, jam sessions, and lots of fun along the way.


These suggestions are just scratching the surface of all the options out there. If you aren't sure exactly what you want to read this summer, the best thing to do is pick up a book and give it a shot. Whether you're a new reader who is still learning which genre is right for them, or a scholastic pro who reads anything within arms reach, there is always more fun reads out there to dive into this summer. 

Topics: Education