Columbia, SC (WLTX) - Summer brain drain is real. Children are out of the classroom for months and can lose some of what they learned from the previous school year.

Kimberly House is the program coordinator for the Midlands Reading Consortium. She gave us some tips on how to keep your child's reading skills sharp throughout the summer.

"Visit the public library. There are many activities there where kids can be involved over the summer where they can engage in reading. Read at home. Take some of those library books home and read to the children. Make sure that they're reading at least 15 minutes a day or give them a goal of reading five books a week; maybe with an incentive at the end. And or just use your travel time to engage a child. Talk about the signs and talk about where you are going and let's read and research about our future activities to keep them interested and engaged over the summer," House said.

It's all about peaking your child's interest. For younger children, read with them, sign them up for educational programs within your school district or local library and let them have some say in what they read.

"They love to read the things that are of interest to them, so before you just give a child a book talk about their interests and introduce the book. Open the front cover and say, 'What do you think this book is about?' Look at the pages. Do a picture walk with the child and then engage and either allow the child to read if they are able to read or do what we call shared reading where you read a page and the child reads a page," she said.

For older children, House said to make sure that they know they've passed the "learning to read" stage and are now "reading to learn".

For more information on the Midlands Reading Consortium click here.