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Should Summer Reading Be Mandatory?

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Reading is fun! But should it be required? Many kids are assigned books to read over the summer. Some people say summer reading keeps kids’ minds sharp. Others say kids need a break. Here, TIME for Kids readers weigh in.

Yes

You’re on break, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t learn. Books can teach you anything and everything. You can learn new words or get inspired to create your own book! —Alexandra Kotsinis, 10, Westfield, New Jersey

Summer vacation is usually three months long, which means there is a long learning gap before the next school year. This time can be used to read and prevent learning loss. —Simran Adnani, 7, Troy, Michigan

Summer reading can help you prepare for the next school year. You’ll be able to develop a better vocabulary and express your opinions clearly. During the summer, you have a lot of time, so why not read? You might end up finding a book or series you enjoy! —Ahaana Sabari Rajan, 9, Gaithersburg, Maryland

Yes, summer reading should be mandatory. It’s something fun that can replace screen time. —Kauther Haque, 10, Milton, Ontario, Canada

No

If summer reading became mandatory, kids would only read because they were forced to. Forcing kids to read during the summer would definitely not help them form a lifelong love of reading. —Mikayla Ariyaratne, 9, Thousand Oaks, California

If summer reading is not mandatory, more kids will spend their time playing outside, which is a very healthy lifestyle to develop. —Aahil Bhagyaraj, 10, Chattanooga, Tennessee

We already have nine months of reading in school. Why do we have to read during our three months of freedom? —Ansley MacLeod, 11, Denver, Colorado

Summertime is a time for kids to relax, go outside, and enjoy just being a kid. —Pallavi Shah, 11, Scotch Plains, New Jersey

Kids have activities planned for the summer, such as sleepaway camp and day camp, so they won’t have time for extra reading. —Naftali Bochner, 10, Bronx, New York

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