Raising Summer Readers Tip-a-Day #2: Create a Summer Bucket List

In addition to coming up with a plan for summer reading (see Tip #1), at the start of summer it can also be fun to inspire and/or help your kids write a “Summer Bucket List”. Introduce the concept of a “bucket list” and get them excited about the idea of creating a wish list and then aiming to cross off all the items.  Encourage your kids to include items that pertain to their summer reading goals, ideas for getting in some additional writing and learning , possibilities for creative projects for which there might not be much time during the school year, and hoped-for summer experiences and adventures. Combining items that directly relate to learning and those that are pure fun reiterates that they both can/should be part of daily summer life. One bucket list can be created for the whole family, or family members can each write their own list. It is most fun for the kids if they can mark off completed bucket items as they go. For added fun, if you take photos of each bucket list item that is completed, kids can make a special Summer Bucket List photo album at the end of summer.

In Our Family… All of my kids wanted to create their own summer bucket lists, which contain a combination of agreed-upon items that everyone embraced as well as personal items that were unique to each child’s list.  Here are a few of the items on their summer bucket lists:

    • Finish a book for every day of summer
    • Hold a lemonade stand 2 times
    • Campout in the backyard
    • Write and illustrate a story
    • Have an ice cream only day
    • Make vacation books
    • Read on a pool raft
    • Make a board game
    • Get 1000 points on DOGObooks.com
    • Go to Soak City

The kids had so much fun coming up with items for their lists, and they are just as eager to cross them all off!

My kids’ Summer Bucket Lists

A fun way to do a summer bucket list is to grab a bucket, encourage kids to write their items on clothespins that are attached around the rim of the pail, and throw clothespins in the bucket once the item has been done.


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