Now that I’ve spent the past few weeks getting my second grader ready to find his own books this summer, I’m moving on to keeping track of what we read. I’ve compiled some ideas of how to document summer reading that is as much for me as it is for him. Sometimes I am a diligent record keeper, while other times entire years will pass without me bothering to write down a single book I’ve read. This summer, I’m going to choose one of the following and diligently keep track of what I read and encourage my second grader to do the same:
A very well-read caterpillar: We did something similar to this a few years back, and the kids really loved it. The only real preparation it took was cutting out a stack of circles to use as we finished books. It did get a bit tricky deciding what to put on the caterpillar, though, since he would have been too long for our room in 3 days if we included every picture book read. If we opt to do this again, though, I’m definitely giving the children the circle punch and letting them do the work.
A book blog: Because we live thousands of miles away from the grandparents, I’ve started having the kids help with the family blog. Having the boy write a little bit about each of the books he reads (and what he did or didn’t like) might make a welcome addition to the blog and let Grandma be more involved in his day-to-day experiences despite the distance. If I could talk him into his very own blog (solely about books or otherwise), that would be even better. As for me? I have loved having this dedicated place to write about books I love. Since I don’t write about everything I read here, though, I’m hoping to use a second method as well.
A list on the back of the door: One summer, my mom and I played Scrabble at least once a day. We kept a running tally of our scores for reasons I no longer remember. It was so satisfying to watch the list grow as the summer went on. This method has the added bonus of no additional prep work. Tape a piece of paper to the back of a door and away you go! (When given the choices, this is what the boy liked best. I caught him trying to remember every book he’s ever read to put on the list, though, so he may quickly find himself ready to try another record-keeping system else as well.)
A reading journal: A reading journal can be anything from a list of books you’ve read at the back of your calendar to a dedicated 2016 Reading Journal. Because I have a weakness for starting new journaling projects without finishing them, I’ve resisted a reading journal out of fear that I will add half a dozen unfinished reading journals to the growing pile of partially completed notebooks next to my bed. That said, there is something appealing about a pen and paper, and I keep wandering back to look at this beautiful version from Modern Mrs. Darcy.
Goodreads: I’ve been on Goodreads for years and years, but I fell out of the habit of using it until recently. Now I have the Goodreads app on my phone, and I find myself updating books in waiting rooms. It’s not a perfect platform, but I do love that I can’t misplace the list of books I want to read when I put them there (as opposed to at least 2 lists of book recommendations I started in the back of my day planner that I’ve long since lost). The idea of Goodreads linking with my Amazon account is nice, but it’s becoming apparent that I buy more textbooks and gifts than I do books for myself. If I could get it to sync with my library account, we’d really be in business.
What else am I missing?