By Mary Getchell, Communications Director, Pierce County Library System
Children and teenagers will boost their reading skill and have fun earning prizes during Pierce County Library System’s Summer Reading program, which runs June 22 through Sept. 1 in all Pierce County Libraries.
This summer children may read down fines they have accrued if they did not return books or other materials on time. For the first 10 hours of reading, students may earn one coupon for up to $5 off their library fines. The Library System is offering this opportunity to reduce fines during these tough economic times and at the same time engage and involve children, tweens and teens with reading.
With Teen Summer Challenge, the Library offers an online gamification program for teens. Challengers will earn badges and master achievements, interact with friends, read down library fines, and share reviews of books, movies, music and places. Pierce County Library Foundation will award an iPad to a winner randomly selected from the top point earners.
Events, books and other materials at all libraries feature the themes: Dig into Reading! for children and Groundbreaking Reads for tweens. Ages 3-11 will explore fossils, composting, nature’s digging animals, off-road adventure and more. Reading prizes include a free pass to Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium or Northwest Trek, and a Round Table Pizza coupon, while supplies last. Children who read 15 hours may enter a drawing to win an iPad, a gift from Pierce County Library Foundation.
Children, ages 0-3, and their parents or caregivers may participate in Wee Readers to support early learning. By completing reading logs with their parents or caregivers, children may earn reading prizes.
Summer reading programs help children maintain learning skills, according to a study commissioned by the Nellie Mae Education Foundation. Researchers concluded that children learn basic skills at the same rate during the school year. They point to inequities during the summer months, as the primary factor in achievement differences. Summer reading helps kids continue to learn and hold steady in reading skills.
A new national report from the Pew Research Center showed that 94 percent of parents feel libraries are important for their children. Of these parents, 84 percent said a major reason they want their children to have access to libraries is that libraries help instill their children’s love of reading and books.
Macy’s, MultiCare Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital, Simpson, Totem Ocean Trailer Express and Wells Fargo are the primary sponsors for Pierce County Library’s Summer Reading program, along with donations to Pierce County Library Foundation and Friends of the Libraries.