Program recognizes local heroes
Published 10:34 am Friday, June 12, 2015
Around 500 local young readers are participating in this year’s Summer Reading Program at the Lincoln County Library. The summer reading program at the library runs throughout June, with this year’s theme being “Every Hero Has a Story.”
Kasie Eckman, children’s librarian, said the children in the program have been building their own superhero costumes. The library will accept old (but clean) T-shirts to be made into capes until June 26.
“This week they made cuffs. We’re asking for T-shirts so that we can cut them up and make them in to capes for everybody, and they will make masks too,” Eckman said. “We’ve asked each kid to bring one for themselves and bring an extra for some one else who might not have that many T-shirts laying around. The Boys and Girls Club comes and other groups, and we want to be sure everyone has one.”
The program sets reading goals that earn children prizes when completed and also has a weekly program at the library on Monday or Wednesday, depending on the age of the reader, and visitors on Sundays.
“I think it’s been going pretty well,” Eckman said. “Every day that we’ve had it so far we’ve had over 100 people come to the library, so that in itself is a success getting that many people here. That and the programs have been great. We’ve had the fire department, the police officers came, and we’ve had Miss Heather Smith and Miss Mary who taught us sign language, that was really cool. And Dr. Joey Sessums.
“So we’ve had a lot of people donating their time to do it,” Eckman said. “A lot of community heroes so that’s been fun for the kids.”
Each child receives a bookmark, a pencil and a reading record to write book titles in, and program attendance is not required to participate. Children can earn one small prize from the treasure chest a week by reading or listening to at least five easy or juvenile non-fiction books on their level a week. If a child reads more than five, they earn the chance to enter their name into a drawing for a big prize. The same goes for children ages 10 through 12, or “chapter book readers,” except they must read 50 pages each week to earn a small prize, and more than 50 pages to earn a chance at a big prize.
“Every week they get to choose. When it started, they had whistles, finger puppets, coins, the sticky hand things, erasers and pencils,” Eckman said. “And now we’re up to like the wooden snakes and Frisbees and a few dinosaur things, so it’s a mix. It takes them a while to pick their prize, so I think that’s a good thing if they have a few things they like.
“The programs aren’t required, you can come whenever. The only thing about being too late would be if you want to participate and read books, you only have a couple more weeks to earn prizes,” she said. “But people can still come and sign up and enjoy the programs.”
Families of participants keep the “reading records,” which accounts for titles read during the program, which must be checked out from the library. Eckman said that many students who bring in their reading records are reading more than what is required.
“A lot of them are so excited that they read more than five books or 50 pages, and their name goes in for a big prize at the end,” Eckman said. “I think it’s awesome when they read more because they are excited about reading and you’re not forcing them to.”
“Hopefully also if we get them to read all summer it’ll get them prepared for school in the fall; they won’t fall behind,” Eckman said.
For more information about the summer reading program contact Eckman at the Lincoln County Library at 601-833-3369.