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Summer, Summer, Summertime🎶🎶🎶

Summer, Summer, Summertime🎶🎶🎶

The reality that summer is half-way over, is not something that I’m ready to face just yet.  Although we went without the traditional large family gatherings, summer camps,  amusement parks, and scheduled vacations, we are starting to find some solace in getting back to a simpler life.  I know I take great joy in the morning bike rides that my son initially had to coax me into.  If you’re not quite ready for the summer to end, I’m sure your child is also hoping for an extension of sun and play-filled days. 

Here are 20 of our book recommendations for books that keep the summer spirit going

Leo Can Swim by Anna McQuinn (Ages 0-3)

Leo, Lola’s little brother from Leo Loves Baby Time, is back in a new adventure at the pool. Leo and Daddy go to swim class where they kick, bounce, and dive like little fish. Joining other babies and their caretakers in the pool is a guarantee for unforgettable fun.  Add to collection

The Night Is Yours by Abdul-Razak Zachariah (Ages 3-7)

Little one, so calm and so happy, the darkness of the night is yours like the darkness of your skin.

This lyrical text, narrated to a young girl named Amani by her father, follows her as she plays an evening game of hide-and-seek with friends at her apartment complex. The moon’s glow helps Amani find the last hidden child and seems almost like a partner to her in her game, as well as a spotlight pointing out her beauty and strength.  Add to collection

A Beach Tail by Karen Lynn Williams (Ages 3-7)

When Gregory’s father tells him not to leave “Sandy” – the lion he has drawn in the sand – and not to go in the water, the young boy has no intention of doing anything else.   With stick in hand, he sets out to give Sandy a tail.  Stretching down the beach – past a gooey purple jellyfish, the washed-out remains of a sandcastle, and a little crab scurrying in the warm sand – it turns out to be a very long tail indeed, and although Greg doesn’t go in the water, or leave Sandy, he discovers that he has left Dad behind… Add to collection

Beach Day! by Candice Ransome (Ages 4-6)

Family time means it’s time to pack up the car and head to the beach! The brother and sister from Pumpkin Day! and its many companion books return for a fabulous day at the shore. Collecting seashells, building a sandcastle, visiting the seaside attractions–enjoy all the indelible memories of childhood summers!   Add to collection 

Splash, Anna Hibiscus by Atinuke! (Ages 4-8)

Anna has left her mango tree – and she s at the beach! Phew, it is hot. But what better way to cool off than by playing in the jumpy, splashy waves? “Come and splash in the waves with me!” shouts Anna Hibiscus. But everyone, including Grandmother and Grandfather, Chocolate, Benz, Wonderful, Joy, Clarity, and Common Sense, is much too busy to wave-jump! So, it’s just Anna Hibiscus and the white waves…

Jabari Jumps by Gaia Cornwall (Ages 4-8)

Jabari is definitely ready to jump off the diving board. He’s finished his swimming lessons and passed his swim test, and he’s a great jumper, so he’s not scared at all. “Looks easy,” says Jabari, watching the other kids take their turns. But when his dad squeezes his hand, Jabari squeezes back. He needs to figure out what kind of special jump to do anyway, and he should probably do some stretches before climbing up onto the diving board.  Add to collection 

One Hot Summer Day by Nina Crews (Ages 4-8)

One Hot Summer Day brings the heat and the cool when a little girl plays outside on a hot, summer day. Follow along as the little girl explores the neighborhood with dogs panting and ladies holding umbrellas for shade as she teases her shadow and eats popsicles. Relief from the heat comes in big, dark thunderous clouds as a summer storm fills the sky.  Add to collection 

How to Code a Sandcastle by Josh Funk (Ages 4-8)

All summer, Pearl has been trying to build the perfect sandcastle, but out-of-control Frisbees and mischievous puppies keep getting in the way! Pearl and her robot friend Pascal have one last chance, and this time, they’re going to use code to get the job done. Using fundamental computer coding concepts like sequences and loops, Pearl and Pascal are able to break down their sandcastle problem into small, manageable steps. If they can create working code, this could turn out to be the best beach day ever!  Add to collection

A Place Inside Me: A Poem to Heal the Heart by Zetta Elliott(Ages 4-8)

In this powerful, affirming poem by award-winning author Zetta Elliott, a Black child explores his shifting emotions throughout the year.

There is a place inside of me
a space deep down inside of me
where all my feelings hide.

Summertime is filled with joy–skateboarding and playing basketball–until his community is deeply wounded by a police shooting. As fall turns to winter and then spring, fear grows into anger, then pride and peace. Add to collection

Ana and Andrew: Summer in Savannah by Christine Platt (Ages 5-7)

Ana & Andrew travel to visit their grandparents in Savannah, Georgia. While they are there, they learn Grandma and Grandpa’s church was built by slaves. With some help from an unusual source! Add to collection

A Stone for Sascha by Aaron Becker (Ages 5-9)

Sophia Martinez: The Beach Trip  by Jacqueline Jules (Ages 6-8)

Sofia and her family are headed to the beach for the weekend, and Sofia is packed and ready to go. But once they get to the beach house, it’s obvious that Sofia did not pack basic beach gear. Will her beach trip be ruined?    Add to collection

Julian’s Glorious Summer by Ann Cameron (Ages 6-9)

Julian isn’t afraid of lions or tigers, but he is scared of . . . bicycles?

Julian’s friend Gloria has a brand-new bicycle. She makes riding it look easy, but Julian is scared. Bicycles are shiny, whizzing, wobbly things. And he’s not ready to ride one. But he can’t tell Gloria he’s scared, so he tells a fib instead. He almost gets away with it . . . until the fib backfires and he’s got an even bigger problem!   Add to collection 

Starring Grace by Mary Hoffman (Ages 7-10)

School’s out . . . and of course, that means it’s time for fun! Grace and her friends are always ready for a little adventure, and Grace’s backyard is the perfect place to set up headquarters. Suddenly the lawn is transformed into the center ring of a big-top circus, then a rocket launch pad, and then a hospital emergency room! The group’s exploits, both real and imagined, provide all kinds of unexpected rewards—and might even land Grace on an actual stage in a real theater production! Add to collection 

Summer in the City by Fracaswell Hyman (Ages 8-12)

Where Mango goes, drama is sure to follow! It’s summer break, and Mango is content to spend her time babysitting her brother, hanging with her friend Izzy, and binge-watching movies late into the night. Then she runs into her drama teacher, who has some big news: their middle school play Yo, Romeo! is headed to the stage in New York City . . . and he wants Mango for the lead role! After overcoming her mom’s initial reluctance–and with some firm rules established–Mango goes off to Brooklyn to stay with her Aunt Zendaya in a teeny apartment and prepare for her theatrical debut. It’s the opportunity of a lifetime, but soon Mango must confront homesickness, insecurity, and the all-important question of what it means to be a good friend–especially when you’re far away from the people you love.  Add to collection

Last Summer with Maizon by Jacqueline Woodson (Ages 8-12)

Margaret loves her parents and hanging out with her best friend, Maizon. Then it happens, like a one-two punch, during the summer she turns eleven: first, Margaret’s father dies of a heart attack, and then Maizon is accepted at an expensive boarding school, far away from the city they call home. For the first time in her life, Margaret has to turn to someone who isn’t Maizon, who doesn’t know her heart and her dreams. . . Add to collection

The Season of Styx Malone by Kekla Magoon (Ages 8-12)

Caleb Franklin and his big brother Bobby Gene are excited to have adventures in the woods behind their house. But Caleb dreams of venturing beyond their ordinary small town. Then Caleb and Bobby Gene meet new neighbor Styx Malone. Styx is sixteen and oozes cool. Styx promises the brothers that together, the three of them can pull off the Great Escalator Trade–exchanging one small thing for something better until they achieve their wildest dream. But as the trades get bigger, the brothers soon find themselves in over their heads. Styx has secrets–secrets so big they could ruin everything.  Add to collection

As Brave as You Are by Jason Reynolds  (Ages 10+)

11-year-old Genie and his older brother Ernie are leaving Brooklyn for the very first time to spend the summer with their grandparents in rural Virginia. It is a time full of surprises for Genie and learning about himself and his family: From finding out that his grandfather is blind to discovering his secret room to learning that bravery can mean different things.  Add to collection

One Crazy Summer by Rita Williams-Garcia (Ages 8-12)

Delphine, Vonetta, and Fern travel to Oakland in 1968 to spend the summer with their mother who abandoned them seven years earlier. They receive a cold welcome from their mother, a dedicated poet, and printer, and are being sent to the Black Panther’s day center every day.  This heartfelt, funny, and thought-provoking novel addresses two difficult subjects: The controversial Black Panther Party, and a mother who leaves her children behind.  Add to collection

The Last Last Day of Summer by Lamar Giles (Ages 8-12)

Otto and Sheed are the local sleuths in their zany Virginia town, masters of unraveling mischief using their unmatched powers of deduction. And as the summer winds down and the first day of school looms, the boys are craving just a little bit more time for fun, even as they bicker over what kind of fun they want to have. That is until a mysterious man appears with a camera that literally freezes time. Now, with the help of some very strange people and even stranger creatures, Otto and Sheed will have to put aside their differences to save their town–and each other–before time stops for good.  Add to collection

 

Happy reading!

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