Learn 5 ways to use summer reading comprehension passages in the K-2 classroom!
5 Cool Ways to Use 1st Grade Summer Reading Comprehension Passages
Summer reading comprehension passages are a great addition to any K-2 classroom. The air before summer vacation is palpable in an elementary classroom – what better way to lean into the excitement than summer reading comprehension passages? Students are busy talking about their fun summer plans and these stories feature relatable topics including camping, the beach, and just being hot outside!
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Get reading for summer!
The weeks leading up to summer vacation are hectic and overwhelming but exciting! Trying to wrap up the year with various assessments, last-minute skills to teach, field trips, and other end-of-year activities – it’s enough to make your head spin!
One year I was running around my first-grade classroom trying to fit it all in. Kids kept coming up asking questions, and disrupting groups or projects. Unexpected events were increasing. We all had the summer itch and I was about to lose my mind! During that week, I realized I needed meaningful, independent activities for students to complete while I pulled individuals or small groups for other work.
On the flip side, I also needed engaging work for my small groups! Even though the year was coming to a close, we still had benchmarks to meet and skills to teach. That’s when I decided to write summer reading comprehension passages. I asked my students what they liked and didn’t like about summer and chose topics from their list to create the passages. There are a variety of levels to spread both individual and small group work. Talk about a win-win!
Why Practice Summer Reading Comprehension
Some may say, “it’s the end of the year, don’t worry about academics!” Or, “We never had to practice summer reading comprehension!” And, while that is true, the summer slide is real. Students lose significant skills over the summer. Many students can pick back up in the fall, but those with weak memory or learning disabilities can have difficulty picking up where they left off. Practicing summer reading comprehension can help students retain important skills to increase their confidence going into the next school year. Summer reading comprehension passages are a great way to meet academic needs and work on target skills while discussing and leaning into the fun of summer. These short passages can be as quick or long as you’d like, depending on the depth of your discussion!
The Importance of Summer Reading Passages
In “The Summer Slide: What we know and Can Do About Summer Learning Loss” author Karl Alexander, Sarah Pitcock, et al., writes that “[summer enrichment] is not about prescribing more formal schooling but rather about providing enrichment, stimulation and learning opportunities that are often, though not always, aligned with academic goals”. Learning over the summer can come in a variety of forms – formal schooling, camps, informal hangouts with friends, pool dates, camping, or just enjoying “being bored”. But, as are many things in life, the key to summer success is balance.
It is illogical to assume students can take 8-10 weeks off from school and return exactly, or close to, where they left off. Rest and recuperating are good, but it’s important to stretch those brain muscles once in a while. Summer reading passages are a great way to easily practice reading at the K-2 grade level while still focusing on summer and its fun.
Practicing common phonics patterns such as CVC words, open and closed syllables, and beginning to see multi-syllable words (depending on your level and story). Just reading once a day will make a huge difference in the student’s life when they re-enter the classroom in the fall.
Summer Themed Reading Comprehension Worksheets
Summer-themed reading comprehension worksheets shouldn’t be boring! And, they are more successful when incorporating student choice. Having a choice is a key factor in differentiating, or leveling your curriculum, to meet student needs. You can learn more ways to differentiate your instruction here.
While you may hear the phrase “differentiation is done for you!” when looking at activities, the truth is quality differentiation relies on the teacher. However, these summer-themed reading passages feature multiple stories at several levels, along with audio and digital versions so you and your students can work together to find the best version to fit their learning.
First Grade Summer Activities
The countdown is on. Summer break is near and you (and your kids!) need tried and true first-grade summer activities. Summer reading comprehension passages are a great way to engage students who are busy talking about summer plans. You can print a page, print a book, or assign a digital version and let your kids read all about summer!
Summer Reading Comprehension Grade 2
We all know students grow at their own pace. This means a second grader could be reading at a Kindergarten or 4th-grade level. Thankfully, these summer reading comprehension passages are scaffolded to accommodate a variety of reading abilities. Don’t worry about your students’ summer reading comprehension grade 2, just grab these booklets and start planning your summer vacation.
How to Use Summer Reading Comprehension Worksheets
Now that you know all the reasons to use summer reading comprehension passages here are 5 cool and creative ways to apply them in the classroom!
Find a relatable story
Print out several copies of each reading passage, or provide students with digital access. Ask your students to think about their summer, or think about an activity they would like to do this summer. Then have students choose a passage that relates to their summer plans. Read the passages and talk about connections between the story and their summer plans.
build a book
Building a book is a great way to monitor comprehension and understanding! To build a book, simply print out one of the foldable summer reading comprehension passages. Cut the book into individual pages, and have the students reassemble using their knowledge of sequencing and storytelling. Just don’t forget to cut off the page numbers at the bottom!
read and match
Read and match is another great way to improve comprehension when reading! Print out enough doubles of reading passages to ensure each student has one. For example, if you have a class of 16 students you’ll want 2 copies of 8 different summer-themed reading passages. Give ample time for students to read their passages, then collect the papers. Have students find their partners based on the re-telling of the summer reading passages!
find the sentence
Read and matching summer sentences is an easier version of the passages. It can also be completed independently, which can be helpful depending on the time of day or your classroom management strategy. While this activity does require a bit of prep, it is engaging for students and a great way to check reading comprehension. Print out your desired summer reading comprehension passage foldable book. Then, either cut the sentences out or, cover them with paper and re-copy. Last, provide your students with a book and cut-up sentences. Have them glue each sentence to the page that makes the most sense.
what word is missing?
This activity requires a bit more prep but is a great activity for understanding sentence structure. Print out your desired reading passage, then cover one word in each sentence. Make copies and see if your students can find the missing words! To differentiate, write the words on the board, or the top of the paper before copying.
Enjoy Your Summer Reading!
There ya have it! You learned the importance of summer reading comprehension passages and (hopefully) discovered some new ways to use them in your K-2 classroom. With quality, and engaging, summer reading you can help students make connections and have fun while maintaining their academic growth.
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