Join the Summer Reading Club. (Contributed)

Good Reads: Value of summer reading

Encourage kids to select reading material on topics they like.

Reading can be one of the many fun activities children choose to fill their summer time. Research has shown that children who participate in public library summer reading programs make achievement leaps during the summer and do better when they return to school in the fall.

A great way to get kids engaged with reading is to have them join the Summer Reading Club at their local public library. A province-wide public library initiative, Summer Reading Club aims to make reading fun.

This year, kids get a beautiful reading record created by artist and published author Jami Gidot and collect stickers to celebrate their reading accomplishments.

At the end of the summer, they receive a medal for all their effort during a special celebration at the Memorial Peace Park Bandstand on Tuesday, Aug. 27 at 11 a.m.

The key to a successful Summer Reading Club is to make it enjoyable. This means encouraging kids to select reading material on topics they like. It also means being flexible about what they read – comics, graphic novels and magazines all count as valid reading choices and often help kids develop a more positive attitude towards reading. Or it might mean listening to an audio book together and talking about the story and trying to guess what happens next.

Role modeling is also incredibly important. Kids pay attention to what the adults in their lives are doing.

When they see parents or caregivers enjoy reading on a regular basis, it has a big impact. Find time to read together as a family, make weekly trips to the library for everyone to pick out new books and talk to each other about what you are reading.

READ ALSO:Library champions and world languages at library.

To make the experience even more fun, Fraser Valley Regional Library has created reading records for everyone in the family, not just elementary school age kids – the Read to Me record for preschoolers, as well as teen and adult Summer Reading Club records.

By joining Summer Reading Club, there are lots of chances for everyone in your family to participate in activities, enter contests and win prizes throughout the summer.

We also have amazing performers coming to the library to help us celebrate Summer Reading Club. We kick off with the Great Gordini Magic Show at the Memorial Peace Park Bandstand on Wednesday, July 3 at 6:30 p.m.

Other performers include master puppeteer Elspeth Bowers, storyteller and poet Tiffany Stone, Karima Essa teaching Bollywood dance, the Well-Worn Trail Puppet Show, Theatre in the Classroom, as well as a Family Dance Party and the return of our popular Puppets in the Park series.

All shows are free and no registration is required.

Make Summer Reading Club a part of your family’s annual summer experience – it may be the spark that awakens your child to the magic of reading.

• For information about Summer Reading Club and other Maple Ridge Public Library programs and services, come by the library, call us at 604-467-7417 or check out our website at www.fvrl.bc.ca.

Liza Morris is a librarian at Maple Ridge Public Library.

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