OKLAHOMA CITY (May 29, 2017) – Don’t believe what it says on the calendar. As far as kids who live in Oklahoma County are concerned, the official first day of summer is June 1. That’s when the Metropolitan Library System’s annual Summer Reading program begins.
This year kids of all ages, from birth to 150, can take part in summer reading and “build a better world”. Just read – or listen - for 10 hours to win great prizes. Throughout the summer you can earn special badges by doing various tasks: checkout a cookbook and cook a recipe from a different culture, write a book review, tag us in a social media post, join us in a scavenger hunt and much more!
Of course, reading is still the fundamental objective of the program. “Children who don’t read over the summer fall into the “summer slide”,” said Kristin Williams, children’s services coordinator at Metro Library. “They typically score lower on standardized tests at the end of the summer than they did on the same test at the beginning of the summer.” And these few months of reading loss add up over the years. By the time kids reach middle school, those who haven’t read during the summers may have lost as much as two years' worth of achievement.
Reading is beneficial for adults, too. “Studies have shown that reading can stimulate your mind, reduce stress, improve your memory and strengthen your thinking skills,” said LaVetta Dent, Outreach Services director at Metro Library. Even better, it only takes 20 minutes of reading each day to enjoy these benefits. “”Reading” doesn't mean you have to sit perfectly still in a chair with a 900-page book,” Dent said. “Your 20-minutes per day will net you the same benefits from reading no matter if you're reading in print, digital or even listening to audiobooks.”
For more information about Summer Reading or Neighborhood Arts, visit www.metrolibrary.org.