Summer Reading for All
Closing the gap, eliminating summer slide, and promoting a life-long love of reading - one book, one kid at a time!

What is the Summer Reading for All program?
Research shows that student reading scores drop between the end of one school year and the beginning of the next school year.  This has been dubbed the "Summer Slide."  It is not that students magically become less-skilled readers from June to August, rather many students do not read during the summer.  Therefore, they are not practicing their reading skills.  To help combat the "Summer Slide," Leander ISD encourages all students and parents to continue reading all year long.  Read for adventure, for fun, to explore a new world, to learn more about a topic, to increase vocabulary, and to wonder. 

Where can students get a book to read for the summer?
  • LISD students can check out books on their mobile devices (iPad, iPhone, Kindle, etc...) via Overdrive.  Go to your mobile device's App Store and download the Overdrive App.  Once downloaded, search for Leander ISD.  Once you download a book, you will have it on your device for two weeks.  After two weeks, it will automatically be returned for you.  If you have a Cedar Park or Leander Public Library Card, you can download books from them as well via Overdrive.  Just search for those libraries in the search box.
  • Leander ISD will have a number of elementary, middle, and high school libraries open during most of the summer.  You are welcome to come and check out books in person.
  • Cedar Park and Leander Public Libraries will be open throughout the summer.
  • And of course, area book stores and online retailers such as Amazon often have great deals on print and digital books.
  • Speaking of Amazon, please considering signing up for Amazon Smile.  Each time you buy something from Amazon, a portion of the sale goes to LISD to support buying books for our students.

How can parents help their students self-select books?
  • Start by asking what types of things does the student like to read about?  Do they like to read about animals?  Then perhaps they would like books about circuses or fictional books that have animals as the main characters.  Librarians will be able to match kids' interests with several books they may like.
  • Teach students to do a "book tasting."  Does the cover of the book look intriguing?  What about the blurb on the inside cover?  Read the first few sentences.  Does it hook you in?
  • Does the student have a favorite author?  If so, help them discover other titles by that same author.  For example, many people read The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton when they were in middle school. However, many people don't know that she has several other books that are just as excellent.
  • Does the student have a favorite book?  If so, help them discover books that are similar to their favorite book.  Book stores, librarians, and websites often have "If you liked ____, then you will like ______" lists.

Will there be an assignment or grade when the student gets back to school?
  • If the student is enrolled in an on-level English Language Arts course, then no, there will not be a summer reading assignment.  However, teachers will likely hold discussions or ask students to write about what they read over the summer.
  • If the student is enrolled in a Pre-Advanced Placement or an Advanced Placement English Language Arts course, there will be a summer reading assignment.  If a student did not receive information about a course's particular assignment, contact the teacher immediately or download the packet for your course here.

What should a student do if they think their book is inappropriate or boring?
If you think your book is inappropriate or boring, stop reading.  It is perfectly okay to stop and choose a different book.

What if my book is too easy/too hard?
Sometimes people read books that are too easy for them.  That's okay.  Sometimes we just want an easy, pleasurable read.  Other times, we crave a challenge.  But if you decide the book you chose to read during the summer is too easy or too hard, feel free to put it down and try a different book.

What can parents do at home to help their child become a better reader?
Successful readers are often products of homes where parents are readers too.  Take a look at these simple ways parents can help their students become better readers.

How can someone donate books or volunteer to help with the Summer Reading for All program?
LISD is launching our Summer Reading for All program at the LISD Continuous Improvement Conference, and we need your new and gently used books! While our focus is collecting books for our secondary readers, we welcome ALL genres, ALL levels - novels/chapter books, picture books, non-fiction selections, etc. Our goal is to send ALL of our students home with books to read over the summer. 
  • If you would like to donate a book (or a box of books!) to the Summer Reading for All Initiative, you can drop off books February 6-7 at Vista Ridge High School.  There will be a donation area in foyer between the school's main gym and the cafeteria.
  • You may also donate by emailing jennifer.abramson@leanderisd.org.
  • You may also donate books at any of the Leander ISD middle school or high schools.  There will be donation boxes set up.  Ask your school's librarian where the donation box is located.
  • If you would like to volunteer to help man the donation area at the Continuous Improvement Conference or to help with the sorting and boxing of donations, please email jennifer.abramson@leanderisd.org.

How are donated books filtered for appropriate content?
District employees will screen the book donations for content that may not be appropriate for secondary aged students.  However, what is appropriate is in the eye of the beholder and differs from family to family.  We encourage parents to have conversations with students about what is appropriate reading material for their family prior to the student choosing a summer reading book.  If a student feels the book they are reading is inappropriate, the student should stop reading and swap that book out with a different one.

What is a lexile?
A lexile is a number that corresponds to a person's reading level or a text's difficulty.  The purpose is to help match readers up with books that are near their independent reading level.  It is sort of like Goldilocks and the Three Bears; a lexile measure tries to help find books that aren't too easy or too hard, but ones that are just right.  Students in LISD take an online Scholastic Reading Inventory test three times a year.  This information helps students know their current reading level and helps parents and teachers monitor a student's growth as a reader.  To find the lexile level of a particular book, check out www.lexile.com for more information.

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