“Go outside and read” is not a usual suggestion, but New York’s first Reading Garden may inspire kids to do just that. Opened last month at Lexington and 104th Street, the garden is part of an Open Space Greening Program. The beautifully landscaped space has a shaded area in the front, with stone benches, trees and a stream running through it. And in back, there’s a more open area where readings, musical performances, and other events are planned. (Hope Community, Inc., a local non-profit, is planning events first up; call (212) 860-8821 or visit www.hopeci.org). The Reading Garden replaces a park that opened in 1980. One nice touch for non-gardeners: Even common flowers and shrubs like rhododendron are labeled, giving kids an opportunity to learn about the plants. The Zen calm of the garden is a welcome antidote to the busy surrounding area.