Summer of Reading Collection


Get summer started on the right page with PBS LearningMedia's Summer of Reading collection! These videos, activities, and interactive games help to build vocabulary and reading comprehension while bringing storybook characters to life.

NEW: Top 10 Summer Reads for Grades 3-5 | What would summer be without the fantasy, mystery, and adventure of a great book? Kick off your Summer of Reading with one of these summer reads selected by PBS LearningMedia staff!

  • Blue Ribbon Readers: Drawing Inferences

    In this WPSU lesson Drawing Inferences, elementary students will practice drawing inferences or making predictions before, during and after reading, and then validating them. The lesson is part of the Blue Ribbon Readers collection.

    Grades: K-5,13+
  • Blue Ribbon Readers: Make Connections

    This WPSU interactive Make Connections Game gives students practice in making mental connections between the text and things the reader already knows. These connections can include things readers have read (text-to-text), things they've seen or heard (text-to-world), and things they've done (text-to-self). The game is part of Blue Ribbon Readers, a collection of games designed to help elementary school students learn to read.

    Grades: K-3
  • Blue Ribbon Readers: Fridge Magnet Game

    The Fridge Magnet Game is part of WPSU’s Blue Ribbon Readers, a collection of seven interactive games designed to help elementary school students gain reading comprehension competences. The game provides practice with the monitoring and clarifying strategies. It requires students to identify confusing words (by monitoring) and to replace them with words from an alternate word pool that make sense in the sentence (clarifying).

    Grades: K-3
  • Blue Ribbon Readers: The Detective's Notebook Game

    This WPSU interactive The Detective's Notebook Game is designed to get students to think about what they are reading and to answer questions that require inferencing. In the game the student has access to an amateur detective's notebook in which several clues or events have been observed. From these clues, some inference or prediction can be made. The game is part of Blue Ribbon Readers, a collection of games designed to help elementary school students learn to read.

    Grades: K-3
  • Blue Ribbon Readers: Monitoring and Repairing

    In this WPSU lesson Monitoring and Repairing,elementary students will identify words that are not known to them and decode or replace them in a variety of contexts. The lesson is part of the Blue Ribbon Readers collection.

    Grades: K-5,13+
  • Blue Ribbon Readers: Making Connections

    In this WPSU lesson Making Connections, elementary students will move toward understanding and comprehending text more effectively by making connections with their own background knowledge. The lesson is part of the Blue Ribbon Readers collection.

    Grades: K-5,13+
  • Blue Ribbon Readers: The Visualizing Game

    The Visualizing Game is part of WPSU’s Blue Ribbon Readers, a collection of seven interactive games designed to help elementary school students gain reading comprehension competences. Throughout the game students may practice creating and recalling mental images of the text. Some of the challenges involve static images and others use serial images—or "movies in the head."

    Grades: K-3
  • Blue Ribbon Readers: Synthesis

    In this WPSU lesson Synthesis, elementary students will explore how to become better readers by using contextual clues to predict an outcome, putting stories in order and assembling sentences. The lesson is part of the Blue Ribbon Readers collection.

    Grades: K-5,13+
  • Blue Ribbon Readers: The Hamburger Game

    The Hamburger Game is part of WPSU’s Blue Ribbon Readers, a collection of seven interactive games designed to help elementary school students gain reading comprehension competences. The Hamburger Game helps students practice attentive reading by choosing the main idea—or "meat"—from a passage of text and dragging it to the center of a sandwich. A hamburger appears and they win points if they are right.

    Grades: K-5
  • Super Readers Challenge

    Play this Super WHY! game, Super Readers Challenge, to practice the alphabet, rhyming, reading, and spelling based on letters and sounds. Students are able to complete four different challenges, and with each, potentially earn a super letter towards the creation of a word. Each of the activities allows the student to work on a different aspect of reading and spelling.

    Grades: PreK-1
  • Storybook Creator

    Encourage students to play this Super WHY! game, Storybook Creator, to practice reading and writing and discover that they have the power to change the story! Students first pick a story that they would like to work with and then have the opportunity to change the story as they go along to make it their own!

    Grades: PreK-1
  • Jane Eyre 1: First Impressions

    In this video segment from the 2007 MASTERPIECE adaptation of Charlotte Brontë's Jane Eyre, we get a glimpse of Jane's remarkable ability to stand up for herself and against injustice. Her aunt, Mrs. Reed, summons Jane and tells her, "You have deliberately made it impossible for me to love you." Despite her aunt's fury, Jane responds quite calmly, "You have not tried very hard…and on the day you die, God will know who's telling the truth, whatever you or I say now." Exasperated, her aunt decides to send Jane away to boarding school, run by the heartless Mr. Brocklehurst. During her interview with Mr. Brocklehurst, Jane proves herself to be not only courageous, but clever as well. When asked what she must do to avoid going to hell—the fate of "disobedient, deceitful girls"” when they die—Jane replies, spiritedly, "I must take care to keep in good health and not to fall ill, sir." Mr. Brocklehurst is appalled at her impudence. He asks her again if she is a "deceitful girl." Jane insists, "I am not a liar."

    Grades: 9-12
  • Jane Eyre 3: The Governess

    In this scene from the 2007 MASTERPIECE film of Jane Eyre, Jane has been invited to bring Adele to the ladies at a fancy dress party, including the imperious Lady Ingram and her beautiful daughter Blanche, whom everyone assumes will become Mr. Rochester’s fiancée. As the scene opens, Mr. Rochester and Lady Ingram are arguing. “If some people are rich and some poor, then that is God’s will. So be it, I am satisfied,” she tells Mr. Rochester. Blanche is annoyed and unfriendly towards Adele and, when the conversation turns to governesses, her mother declares, “…governesses are a nuisance, all of them.” Blanche laughs carelessly about a trick she played on one of her governess. “We were very naughty,” she says, “She was so boring, poor thing.” Jane observes the conversation silently, but she is hurt and insulted by their disdain and disgust.

    Grades: 9-13+
  • Jane Eyre 2: Meeting Mr. Rochester

    In this scene from the 2007 MASTERPIECE film of Jane Eyre, Jane is walking alone on the moors. The mood is tranquil, yet there is a hint of foreboding. Suddenly, Jane’s quiet contemplation of nature is crosscut with the image and sound of a horse galloping thunderously. The music changes, and we know something dangerous is about to happen. Out of the mist comes a riding figure. Before Jane can move out of the way, the horse rears up. We see the horse on the ground, and the man yells at a dog, “Quiet, Pilot. Dammit!” Jane asks, “Are you injured, sir?” The man replies harshly, “Get away from me. Witch. (You’ve) done enough damage.” Jane identifies herself, but Mr. Rochester does not. Leaning on Jane for support, he gets back on his horse, groaning. “That’s what happens when you bewitch a man’s horse, Miss Eyre,” he says, “a lot of pain and cursing.” Jane, although shaken by the incident, corrects him: “I did not bewitch your horse, sir.” When he orders her home, she says, with a tiny bit of defiance in her voice, that first she will finish her errand.

    Grades: 9-12
  • Verbal Blending with the Between the Lions Knights

    In this video from Sirius Thinking, Ltd., a father and his son take advantage of one of the entertaining literacy activities available in the Middle Country (Long Island, NY) Public Library’s Between the Lions Reading Den. The pair are using library-provided materials to play a verbal blending game based on BTL's "Gawain’s Word" segments, which feature Monty Python-style knights "crashing together at high speed" to make a word. The words the father and son are building are all "short-i" words, particularly relevant because they have just watched a BTL episode in which "short-i" sounds are featured.

    Grades: PreK-1
  • Between the Lions Digital Den in Action

    In this video from Sirius Thinking, Ltd., librarian Lisa Kropp shares a prototype version of the Digital Den software program with young visitors to the Middle Country (Long Island, NY) Public Library’s Between the Lions Reading Den. Lisa is using interactive, animated versions of the trade books Sheep on a Ship and Joseph Had a Little Overcoat, both of which were featured in Between the Lions television episodes that are available to parents and kids in the Reading Den. The video demonstrates how the interactive versions of the books are linked, via the Digital Den software, to an interactive digital dictionary, and to audio tracks of Cleo, BTL’s lioness star, reading clicked-on words aloud to the kids in either English or Spanish.

    Grades: PreK-1
  • American Wedding, by Joseph Millar

    This video segment from Poetry Everywhere features the poet Joseph Millar reading his poem “American Wedding” at the Dodge Poetry Festival. A father watches his daughter at her wedding, and is filled with mixed emotions. He is proud of her, he loves her, he knows she is happy and in love, but he can’t help feeling the precariousness of her situation as she prepares to embark on adult life.

    For a biography of the poet Joseph Millar, please visit the Poetry Foundation Web site.

    Grades: 7-12
  • American Smooth, by Rita Dove

    This video segment from Poetry Everywhere features the poet Rita Dove reading her poem “American Smooth” at the Dodge Poetry Festival. “American Smooth” is the title poem of a collection of Rita Dove’s poems about dancing. “…When I began to appreciate the technical intricacies of each [dance] style,” says Dove, “the rise upon tiptoe, [or] the gradual lowering from tiptoe that one executes in the second half of the third beat of the waltz—only then did ‘American Smooth’ start to shimmer into being.”

    For a biography of the poet Rita Dove, please visit the Poetry Foundation Web site.

    Grades: 7-12
  • A Partial History of My Stupidity, by Edward Hirsch

    This video segment from Poetry Everywhere features the poet Edward Hirsch reading his poem "A Partial History of My Stupidity" at the Dodge Poetry Festival. Edward Hirsch is drawn to writing about wandering alone in the night, when a person’s thoughts can’t be hidden or drowned out by daily activities, work, or other people’s words. Facing up to what is really on your mind is the exhilarating and scary result of  this night-time wandering.

    For a biography of the poet Edward Hirsch please visit the Poetry Foundation Web site.

    Grades: 7-12
  • Poetry Circles

    In this video, Christy Petroze’s seventh grade students work together in poetry circles to examine the form, content, language, and meaning of poetry. At the beginning of the school year, Christy introduces the students to each part of the explication of a poem in the form of a job. After the students work with the core content elements and practice each job individually, they work in groups to construct meaning through discourse. As they engage with each job, they practice the strategies of proficient readers.

    Grades: 13+

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