Summer break is finally here! One of my favorite activities to do with my kids when school is out is to go to our local public library and read to our hearts’ content. There is something about the smell of books, old and new, and intriguing displays that invite my kids to search for stories to get lost in. To encourage continued reading over the summer, parents and children can sign up for their local library’s summer book club. The theme for this summer is Libraries Rock! and a handful of the libraries in Marion and Polk Counties are participating. Infants through highschool are all welcome to sign up and there is even an adult summer reading book club, too! Best of all, signing up for summer book club is free and the more time you spend reading, the more chances you have at winning prizes and goodies. I remember one year, the summer book club bags my kids received included free admission tickets to the Oregon Zoo. We have a family of 5 and those tickets were a win-win for us — my kids love to read and they got a reward with a treat to the Oregon Zoo. As a parent it was a win-win, too — I got to see my kids enjoy reading and NOT feel the dent in my wallet because their entry fee was paid for when we visited the Oregon Zoo later that month.
In addition to getting material rewards for participating in summer book club, don’t forget that reading also supports literacy development for young children. According to Zero to Three, reading with young infants and toddlers:
- helps them learn that pictures and print words are symbols to interpret
- exposes them to new words, thus building on vocabulary development
- starts to help them familiarize them with the conventions of print
Below are local libraries that have online registration available:
The Parenting Hub would love to hear about the reading adventures that books take you and your family on this summer. Please send your stories to: firstname.lastname@example.org