Summer back to school reading? No problem if you own a trampoline!

By Jen Plym from

My kids, actually just my boys, would rather scrub toilets than complete their summer reading. They are super active and would choose to play outside all day long before being forced to read a mandatory book.  They claim it’s the mandatory part, not the reading part.  We all know it’s a little bit of both.

Every June we have a family meeting and we discuss how we’re going to get ahead of our summer “homework” so we don’t have to crunch the week before school starts.  Best laid plans, right? Well in early August, we realized that back-to-school was upon us and the boys hadn’t put a crease in their books. We needed reinforcement and in a bad way!

If only the boys could be like their big sister who loves to read anywhere and everywhere, she actually gave us this brilliant idea!

Reading on the Springfree

Thanks to big sis’ inspiration, we decided to pull in the big guns and use the beloved trampoline as a reading incentive. We knew the trampoline was power since every kid in our neighborhood is on it 24/7, so we used it to our advantage. We implemented a 20/20 plan – where they had to read for 20 minutes and jump for 20 minutes.  I’m happy to report, it worked like a charm.  Summer reading and all reports are complete, thanks to our good ‘ole trampoline!

Our fam is really looking forward to the fall, so we can continue our 20/20 program (wink, wink!) but also do our all-time favorite fall activities including hosting a backyard movie night, campouts on the trampoline and perfecting our trampolining jumps – which is a daily fun fest in our household!

Happy Back-to-School Season!


Jen Plym, Founder,

Jen Plym is the mom of four active kids from elementary school to high school. She and her best friend started Charlotte Smarty Pants as a daily blog in 2007 before social media even existed. With Jen’s leadership and vision, CSP now engages thousands of Charlotte parents each month and has become the ultimate parenting resource for the Greater Charlotte, NC community. 

Jen’s passion is connecting Charlotte parents with each other. She is committed to opening the communication lines between all parents and truly believes that when everyone is talking to each other, big things can happen.  

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