Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)


June 27, 2014

School's out, but library continues offering services

ASHLAND — No more pencils, no more books!” When I was a child, I thought that the start of summer meant the end of schoolwork; I had no idea my love for reading was helping me to continue learning throughout the summer.

Many of my teacher friends often tell me about something referred to as the “summer slide,” which is something that happens when children do not continue to read during summer break. They tend to educationally slide backward, and if you think about it, it makes sense. It reminds me of something my mother would always say: “If you don’t use it, you’ll lose it.” Unfortunately, many teachers spend the first month of school reteaching material  students have forgotten over the summer.

Boyd County Public Library has a summer reading program that can help children avoid the summer slide and even reward them for reading. The program for children, teens, and even adults is free; all you have to do is register. As children and teens read, they log the hours spent reading and redeem prizes at their next visit to any library branch. Children may even log the hours you spend reading to them (keep that in mind when your child requests the lengthiest book on the shelf for their next bedtime story).

Each age group has a theme, reward levels and prizes. Children up to 7 participate in “Fizz Boom Read!” Prizes for this age group are a splat ball, browsing bag, book, light up yo-yo, kite and a T-shirt. Tweens (8 through 12) participate in “Spark a Reaction” and earn prizes such as a splat ball, sports bag, book, journal, T-shirt and alarm clock. The teen program also is titled “Spark a Reaction” and they earn awesome prizes like lanyards, earbuds, T-shirts, a book of choice and one free book every month for a whole year! Participants are  entered into a grand prize drawing. Children who read 50 hours are entered to win a tablet computer; tweens who read 60 hours could win an Ipad Mini; and teens who read 100 hours have a chance at winning a tablet computer, too.

The summer reading fun doesn’t stop there: BCPL also hosts lively, weekly programs for toddlers to teens that are all about science. Toddlers love listening to silly stories and creating a science inspired craft while the big kids and teens transform into mad scientists and conduct scientific experiments.

Some weekly themes include: Grossology, Bubbles and Spark a Change. While the summer reading programs are a blast, children do not have to attend to earn their reading rewards — it’s just an added bonus. Program days and times for all age groups is as follows:

‰Main branch (1740 Central Ave., Ashland): Wednesdays at 2 p.m., ages 4 to 12; Tuesdays at 6 p.m., teens; and Fridays at 11:30 a.m., toddlers;

‰Kyova branch: Tuesdays at 2 p.m., ages 4 to 12; Thursdays at 6 p.m., teens; and Fridays at 1 p.m., toddlers;

‰Catlettsburg branch (2704 Louisa St.): Thursdays at 2 p.m., ages 4 to 12; Mondays at 10:30 a.m., toddlers.

Parents, no need to feel left out; we have a summer reading program for you, too. Literary Elements runs until Labor Day, and adults earn rewards based on the number of books they read this summer. Book review forms are available at any branch, or at thebookplace.org.

While the slide at the pool is absolutely fine this summer, don’t let your children slip down the summer slide.

Those who read during the summer months are less likely to lose the skills they have learned during the school year and will be better prepared when returning to school in the fall.

With fun activities and fun incentives, learning has never been so much fun!  

DENISE DILLOW is youth services supervisor for Boyd County Public LIbrary.

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