Many of us grew up hearing familiar fairy tales and probably have a favorite one that brings back fond memories. Fairy tales are rich in tradition and were passed down orally from generation to generation before they were formally written down. Fairy tales are more than just for pleasure and enjoyment. Fairy tales teach valuable lessons about perseverance, endurance, strength, and courage. 

This year’s Collaborate Summer Reading theme that is featured in libraries across the country is Imagine Your Story and it focuses on fairy tales, fantasy and mythology. 

Nebraska Extension has created a great resource for parents, early childhood professionals and anyone who loves to read with young children that ties directly with local libraries’ summer reading programs. It is called 4-H STEM Reading Connections. Eight storybook guides featuring a variety of famous fairy tales were developed in partnership with Mount Marty College pre-service students. Each storybook guide includes: conversation starters, a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) activity, related books, ways to extend the learning experience through play, and why it is important to read aloud to children. Everything is at your fingertips!

Access to these free storybook guides can be found here. Simply visit the website to select and download the storybook guides that you are interested in using with the children that you care for. 

These storybook guides can be utilized in a variety of ways.  No need to panic if you do not have access to the featured storybook. Consider listening to the story online or sharing the story orally from memory. The storybook guides have a variety of options and can be customized to meet your needs and interests. The possibilities are endless! The shared reading experience and creative play opportunities are sure to create an enthusiasm for fairy tales and foster a joy for reading. 

Albert Einstein is known for saying, “If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales.  If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales. Let’s take Albert Einstein’s advice and share the joy of fairy tales with children this summer and beyond!"


Tags: Storybooks , summer reading , reading , problem solving

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