Take advantage of your students' passion for tech and introduce them to these great reading apps and websites.

girl on the lawn reading on an ipad

Summer is just around the corner! What a perfect time for kids to get swept away in the plot of a great page-turner. Our 2014 research report, Children, Teens, and Reading, shows that adolescents aren't reading much for fun; a third of 13-year-olds and 45% of 17-year-olds say they've read for pleasure one to two times a year, if that. However, we know that kids read on their devices all the time -- whether to check their social media feeds, look up a random fact on Wikipedia, or keep up with text messages from friends.

Take advantage of your students' passion for tech and introduce them to ereader apps like iBooks, Nook, or Kindle. Consider including a link to our Essential Books for Kids and Teens in your end-of-the-year email to parents. Parents can help kids find a good read from the library or bookstore to download onto their devices. In addition, before they take off for the summer, consider sharing these apps and sites that support reading for fun. 

 

BiblioNasium

This safe, simple social network lets kids share their reading success with friends, creating healthy competition and confidence. Read full review.

Bookopolis

Kids-only social network gives students a safe space to connect, allows students to showcase and share their reading progress. Read full review.

Bookshare

Fantastic digital library service provides a powerful sense of independence for students with print-related disabilities. Read full review.

Epic! - Unlimited Books for Kids

This large collection of books and videos on a wide variety of topics is an easy -- and free -- enhancement to any classroom library. Read full review.

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Goodreads

Lively community for bookworms can enhance teens' reading experience and help them become thoughtful, enthusiastic readers. Read full review.

Harry Potter Reading Club

With activities, discussion questions, and lots of free access to the books, this site is a great place for Harry Potter fans new and old. Read full review.

LitPick

Safe, fun environment allows YA lovers to read their favorite books while learning how to discuss literature. Read full review.

Newsela

Up-to-date, high-interest articles meet kids right at their levels -- a great tool to bolster kids' nonfiction reading practice. Read full review.

Reading Rainbow Skybrary Family

Vast book and video library is a wonderful and practical way to get kids excited about learning and reading. Read full review.

ustyme

This fantastic platform encourages social reading among friends and family near and far. Read full review.

Erin Wilkey O.

Erin’s work has focused on supporting students, teachers, and families for over a decade. As content director for family and community engagement at Common Sense, she provides parents and caregivers with practical tips and strategies for managing media and tech at home, and supports teachers in strengthening partnerships with families. Prior to her work with Common Sense, Erin taught public high school students and adult English learners in Kansas City. Her time as a National Writing Project teacher consultant nurtured her passion for student digital creation and media literacy. She has bachelor's degrees in English and secondary education and a master's degree in instructional design and technology. Erin loves to knit, read, hike, and bake. But who has time for hobbies with two young kids? In her free time these days, you'll find her hanging out at playgrounds, the zoo, and the beach with her family.