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Summer Fun! 15 Summertime Books for Children

School is out, the sun is shining, and the beach is calling your name! While reading might not be everyone's favorite summer activity, it is an extremely important way to prevent summer learning loss.

Studies have found that children return from summer break and start the new school year with lower academic achievement levels than they had at the beginning of summer due to the lack of formal literacy programs. Getting them to read or reading to them yourself is a great way to keep their minds active and prevent learning loss.

Here is a fantastic list of books that will help your children keep up with their reading skills, while also getting them excited for the summertime!

Hot Dog

by Doug Salati (Author)

This hot dog has had enough of summer in the city! Enough of sizzling sidewalks, enough of wailing sirens, enough of people's feet right in his face. When he plops down in the middle of a crosswalk, his owner endeavors to get him the breath of fresh air he needs. She hails a taxi, hops a train, and ferries out to the beach. Here, a pup can run!

The Watermelon Seed

Greg Pizzoli (Author)

With perfect comic pacing, Greg Pizzoli introduces us to one funny crocodile who has one big fear: swallowing a watermelon seed. What will he do when his greatest fear is realized? Will vines sprout out his ears? Will his skin turn pink? This crocodile has a wild imagination that kids will love.


by Aaron Reynolds (Author), Dan Santat (Illustrator)

Dude! You have to read this book. It's totally about a platypus and a beaver who are friends. They want to go surfing but dude, there's this shark who's in the ocean, too. But don't worry... this shark approaches and you'll never guess what happens.

How I Became a Pirate

by Melinda Long (Author), David Shannon (Illustrator)

When Braid Beard’s pirate crew invites Jeremy Jacob to join their voyage, he jumps right on board. Buried treasure, sea chanteys, pirate curses—who wouldn’t go along? Soon Jeremy Jacob knows all about being a pirate. He throws his food across the table and his manners to the wind. He hollers like thunder and laughs off bedtime. It’s the heave-ho, blow-the-man-down, very best time of his life. But then Jeremy Jacob finds out what pirates don’t do…

Hello Ocean

by Pam Muñoz Ryan (Author), Mark Astrella (Illustrator)

Relive a day at the beach with this lovely book of memories. You can almost feel the salt spray on your face and smell the musky scent of ocean in the cool morning air. Remember how the sand squishes between your toes as the tide rushes to shore and taste the tang of the ocean on your lips.

And Then Comes Summer

by Tom Brenner (Author), Jaime Kim (Illustrator)

From flip-flops and hide-and-seek to fireworks and ice-cream trucks; from lemonade stands and late bedtimes to swimming in the lake and toasting marshmallows, there’s something for everyone in this bright and buoyant celebration of the sunny season.

A Perfect Day

by Lane Smith (Author, Illustrator)

Today is a perfect day for Cat, Dog, Chickadee, and Squirrel. Cat is lounging among the daffodils. Dog is sitting in the wading pool, deep in the cool water. Chickadee is eating fresh seed from the bird feeder. Squirrel is munching on his very own corncob. Today is a perfect day in Bert's backyard. Until Bear comes along, that is. Bear crushes the daffodils, drinks the pool water, and happily gobbles up the birdseed and corncob. Today was a perfect day for Cat, Dog, Chickadee, and Squirrel. Now, it's just a perfect day for Bear!

Pete the Cat: Pete at the Beach

by James Dean (Author, Illustrator), Kimberly Dean (Author)

Pete the Cat is one groovy cat at finding shells and building sandcastles at the beach. But when it gets too hot, there’s only one way to cool off—jump into the ocean! Except Pete might be a scaredy-cat when it comes to the water.

A Camping Spree with Mr. Magee

by Chris Van Dusen (Author)

In their new adventure, Mr. Magee and his dog, Dee, are enjoying a peaceful camping trip when along comes a lumbering, marshmallow-loving bear and the excitement begins. The next thing the two campers know, they are plunging down a mountain, racing down a river, and teetering on the edge of a waterfall! How will Mr. Magee and Dee find their way out of this slippery situation?

The Night Before Summer Vacation

by Natasha Wing (Author), Julie Durrell (Illustrator)

A little girl and her family are getting ready to go on vacation . . . or at least they are trying to. In the effort to pack everything that will be needed, there's bound to be something overlooked, and what that is provides a funny ending to this meter-perfect "twist" on Clement Moore's classic.

The Very Hungry Caterpillar's

First Summer

by Eric Carle (Author, Illustrator)

Celebrate summer with The Very Hungry Caterpillar and his friends in this exploration of the season. Young readers can learn all about seasonal sensory experiences, like listening to noisy bugs, feeling the warm sunshine, smelling the yummy scents of a cookout, and so much more!

Llama Llama Sand and Sun

by Anna Dewdney (Author)

Splish, splash with Llama Llama in Anna Dewdney's New York Times bestselling series! Llama Llama loves splashing in the waves, building sandcastles on the beach, and soaking up the sun! This casebound book includes 5 interactive touch-and-feel elements and a story that kids will want to read over and over again!

Biscuit's First Beach Day

by Alyssa Satin Capucilli (Author), Pat Schories (Illustrator)

Biscuit is going on his first trip to the beach! He is excited about making sandcastles, collecting seashells, and playing in the ocean. Join Biscuit for some fun in the sun!

You're My Little Firecracker

by Nicola Edwards (Author), Natalie Marshall (Illustrator)

Featuring everything from adorable firecrackers to sweet apple pies, You’re My Little Firecracker is a festive story that celebrates the love between a parent and child. Each colorful spread features a sweet, rhyming sentiment paired with a die-cut shape that adds depth and interest.

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