The success story actually began on May 31, 2018 when 275 youngsters checked out 437 books on Kickoff Day. During June, the number of checkouts continued to climb, to over 5,000 books! 244 new library patrons signed up too, breaking last years records. Over 500 children ended the summer as part of the Summer Reading Program which had an exciting Fun with Mary Poppins theme.
Storytime was a very popular part of the program, offering prizes, guest readers and exceptional books and songs. One surprise was Mary Poppins and Bert the Chimney Sweep, who read to two different groups of storytime kids. Also Brett the Bubble Guy and the Texas A and M Chemistry Road Show were huge hits. Storytime actually continues year-round for pre-schoolers.
August 2 was the final day to turn in reading logs in the program. The success is not only good for the Library, but for the children. When a child completes the three reading log challenge, they will have read over 8 hours total, preventing the possibility of “summer slide” on their reading skills during the summer out-of-school months.
Why is the Summer Reading Program so important to our children? When not engaging our brains, we lose some of what we have learned. Reading aloud benefits all children and teens, especially those who struggle. One benefit is that when a student hears a book being read, the child will build listening comprehension skills with grade-level-and-above books. This increases their knowledge and expands the experience with text, so the students do better when reading on their own. The library has a section of children’s Audiobooks and eAudiobooks available.
Librarian Hope Cain thanks everyone who took part in the 2018 Summer Reading Program and encourages all ages to explore the Sulphur Springs Public Library and enjoy reading all year round!