Kids involved in summer reading program were up to two times more likely to read every day

summer_reading

Image credit: East Lansing Public Library

Reading Is Fundamental (RIF), a children’s literacy nonprofit, recently released results of a summer reading survey it undertook with Macy’s. More than 1,000 parents of 5- to 11-year-olds were asked about their opinions about their child’s reading habits and summer reading. (We should also point out that this survey was “intended to gain mediagenic findings” for an RIF campaign in partnership with Macy’s.)

Parents reported their child reading more during the summer, spending an average 5.9 hours per week reading books, than during the school year, with an average 5.4 hours reading per week. In addition, the results indicated that children who participated in a reading program last summer were up to two times more likely to read every day. More than 8 in 10 (83%) parents felt it was extremely or very important that their child read during the summer. Parents who felt this way were twice as likely to say their child read a book at least 4 times a week last summer when compared to parents who felt reading was somewhat or not at all important.

At the same time, reading was not considered the most important activity for their child: Nearly half (49%) said playing outside was the most important activity they wanted their child to do this summer, while less than 1 in 5 (17%) said reading books was the most important activity.

Libraries were the major book provider for parents: A full 3 out of 4 parents said they borrowed books from the library for their child to read during the summer. More than 4 in 5 (86%) ever visited a library with their child, with 30% going to the library at least once a week last summer.

Read the full executive summary here to learn more about what children read during the summer, their preferences, and their parents’ opinions about summer reading.

Note: This post is part of our series, “The Weekly Number.” In this series, we highlight statistics that help tell the story of the 21st-century library.

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