Today, June 18th, many of the Metro DC-area libraries are kicking off their free Summer Reading Programs! At our house, we really don’t need any incentives to read – but, I (probably more than A) enjoy receiving a tangible reward for reading Babar, Arthur, and Clifford to her for the one millionth time. Of course, as my husband helpfully points out, the reward generally doesn’t work in our favor, since it adds yet another book to our already sagging bookshelves. But, what can I say? I’m a glutton for punishment!
I encourage you to incorporate reading into your schedule this summer! Your children will not only benefit from it educationally, you will be helping to instill in them a love of books that will carry with them for their entire life. As I was doing a little research for this post, I was shocked to learn that 21 million Americans can’t read at all, 45 million are marginally illiterate and one-fifth of high school graduates can’t read their diplomas, according to a 1993 Department of Justice report. How tragic, when we are blessed with so many resources!
And, an even more sobering thought, it is estimated that the cost of illiteracy to business and the taxpayer is $20 billion per year, according to a United Way report. It is so crucial that we equip our children with the ability to read! To quote Kofi Annan, “Literacy is a bridge from misery to hope. It is a bulwark against poverty, and a building block of development, an essential complement to investments in roads, dams, clinics and factories. Literacy is a platform for democratization, and a vehicle for the promotion of cultural and national identity. Literacy is, finally, the road to human progress and the means through which every man, woman and child can realize his or her full potential.” And, summer with all these great incentive programs, is the perfect time to start reading! And, to help, here is a list of local public library summer reading programs throughout the DC Metro area:
Anne Arundel County Summer Reading Program 2012
Kids entering grade 12 and younger are invited to join the 2012 Summer Reading Club! Sign up anytime, at any branch, beginning June 4. Club-related programs and activities begin on June 18 and run through July 28. Click a program title below to find out more.
All Summer Reading Club participants are eligible to win special prizes. And, all public and private schools that achieve 25 percent participation or higher in the Club have a chance to win the Chesapeake Cup!
- Dreams and Magic! with Joe Romano
- If Pigs Could Fly with the Blue Sky Pupper Theater
- Sign Language Dreams with Kathy MacMillan
- By the Sea with Bridgette Michaels
Arlington County Summer Reading Program 2012
Summer is a great time for reading, and this summer we are Dreaming Big! This is how it works:
- Sign-up online or at any Arlington Public Library location.
- Read 10 books (audiobooks and comics count, too!)
Keep track on your Summer Reading Log.
Beginning July 7, bring in your reading log for a prize.
Read a Book, Get a Book, Give a Book: For each completed book log, The Friends of the Library will donate a book to The Reading Connection, a local organization that promotes literacy and gives books to children in need! Be sure to check out their list of awesome summer programs! Kids entering grades 6 and up, start here!
Saturday, June 2: Registration begins.
Saturday, July 7: First day to pick up your prize.
Saturday, Aug. 25: Last day to register.
Saturday, Sept. 8: Last day to pick up your prize.
Baltimore County Summer Reading Program
On June 11th, Summer Reading officially begins; register using the links here and pick up a gameboard at your branch! On August 11th, Summer Reading ends at branches which are not open on Sundays. On August 12th, Summer Reading ends at branches which are open on Sundays. August 24th is the last day to pick up stickers and completion prizes for preschool and elementary school participants / last day for middle school participants to turn in raffle slips for prize drawings.
Calvert County Summer Reading Program
Calvert Library and county schools encourage students to be life-long learners and year-round readers! Each year students are encouraged to read during their summer break. Signing up for Summer Reading at Calvert Library can also help you fulfill your summer reading requirement for school.
Culpeper County Summer Reading Program
Registration for summer reading program begins on June 12th and lasts through July 29th. Children’s summer reading program is for children ages birth through grade 5 (there is a special program for grades 6-11). Upon registration, you will receive specials bags, bookmarks, and reading logs. Then, upon completing the reading goals, your children will earn free food coupons, stickers, glow-in-the-dark wristbands, books, and parties as incentives. Culpeper will also be hosting a myriad of fun kids’ programs this summer!
Fairfax County Summer Reading Program
The Fairfax County Public Library Summer Reading Program encourages children and teens to read for pleasure during summer vacation. It is held in cooperation with the Fairfax County Public Schools system. The Summer Reading Program runs from June 15 – September 1 .
Preschoolers to second graders and third graders to sixth graders read 15 books. Children can have books read to them. Students in grades 7-12 read eight books. Sign up and record your books online or get a reading log at your library. Once you complete your reading, head to your library branch by September 1 to receive a coupon book full of free and discounted prizes. Included in the book are great coupons such as: a free game of bowling from AMF, a free kid’s meal at Bob Evans, buy one kid’s creation and get one free at Coldstone Creamery, a free child’s pass to Colvin Run Mill, and much more!
Fauquier County Summer Reading Program
Summer reading program registration begins online Sunday, June 3, and at all of the county’s public libraries on Monday, June 4. Prizes, programs and special events are all free, courtesy of The Friends of the Fauquier Libraryand other community sponsors. Participants set their own personal reading goals when they register based on how many books they would like to read and log by Friday, Aug. 17 – the last day to update online book logs. The library’s goal is for participants to collectively read 30,000 books. Saturday, Aug. 11 is the last day to make book log entries.
Children are entitled to one spin of the prize wheel each week after updating their reading logs. Teens are eligible to draw a small prize each week after updating their reading logs. Additional prizes may be earned by completing short book reviews to be posted in the library. Fill out book review forms online or at any Fauquier County Public Library. Complete your book review and return it to the library to become eligible for a prize drawing. Each Friday, beginning June 15, a name will be drawn from that week’s book review entries. If you win, you will be contacted.
Frederick County Summer Reading Program
Join Frederick County’s Summer Reading Program that runs from May 1st through August 11th. Summer Reading Club participants will have the opportunity to choose from fun, small prizes at their library branch throughout the summer as they complete the program. In addition, kids who log 600 minutes of reading using the Summer Reading Club website can select an additional prize from their library’s treasure chest. Each finisher (complete 4 rows of activities on the gameboard) will receive a paperback book. They will also be drawings for big prizes, such as a Great Wolf Lodge gift card and an e-reader.
Howard County Summer Reading Program
Everyone in Howard County, babies to adults, can read for fun and earn prizes! Sign up online or at any branch. Read or listen to books from pre-selected reading lists, or choose your own books, magazines, and newspapers. Just kick back, relax, and READ.
King George County Summer Reading Program
Don’t miss their exhilarating summer reading kick-off event, co-sponsored by the King George Family YMCA. Mad Science of Central Virginia will be bringing their captivating and highly interactive “Up, Up & Away” show featuring scientific concepts. This entertaining and educational show is fantastic for children of all ages. Registration in the Children’s Summer Reading Program is required. Register today at the Library! Thursday, June 21 at 1 p.m. at the YMCA.
Loudoun County Library Summer Reading Program
Registrants receive a ‘challenge card’ designed especially for their age group: birth to 5, 6 to 11, 12 to 18, and 19 to 100+. The challenges guide you through a summer of entertainment, education and fun. Your local librarian gladly show you how to download a book to your eReader, request an item on the mobile catalog, register for a workshop, find the latest bestseller, or direct you to the most comfortable spot in the library to spend your afternoon hiding out from the sun (and maybe even your kids!). Adults can enter to win the grand prize of a Nook Color. Children age 6 to 11 can read to win a trophy for their school. Visit your library branch to register!
Montgomery County Summer Reading Program
Children and teens in all age ranges are invited to participate in this year’s Summer Reading Program at Montgomery County Public Libraries (MCPL) which will run from June 12 to August 11. The themes are “Read to Me” for birth thru Pre-K; “Dream Big” for children K thru 6; and “Own the Night” for teens. Participants can sign up for the program and keep track of the books they read, or have read to them, using the designated summer reading registration computer or a public computer in the library, at home or elsewhere. Registration begins June 12.
The Summer Reading Program is offered on three levels:
• Read to Me! is for children from birth to five years old. Parents or caregivers can sign up their children. After reading at least five books, an online certificate can be printed out from the computer.
• Kids Read! is for children from ages 6 to 12. Kids can sign up and read at least five books to earn a certificate, which can be printed out from the computer.
• Teens Read! is for teens in middle and high school. Teens who read four books or more earn a certificate, which can be printed out from the computer.
Recommended reading lists by grade will be available on the Library’s website.
Magicians, musicians, storytellers, jugglers, and puppets are among the various entertainers that will perform for children at all MCPL branches this summer. Schedules of programs are on the library’s calendar of events and flyers will be available at the branches.
Prince William County Summer Reading Program
Prince William County’s Summer Reading Program runs from June 18th through August 18th, 2012. Just sign up online and log in your books beginning June 18th. Students in the Prince William County School System who read the number of books required for their grade level (grades K-2, five books; grades 3-5, three books) will receive extra credit at their school simply by turning in their Summer Quest reading log.
Even if you don’t live in Prince William County, be sure to check out their neat Summer Reading website – there are links to lots of great printable activities, contests, and cool interactive websites.
Prince George’s County Summer Reading Program
The Prince George’s County Memorial Library System has Summer Reading programs for all ages, from June 1 until August 31. Register Online for the PGCMLS Summer Reading Program or visit your local library branch for activities, events and special prizes!
Stafford County Summer Reading Program
From June 1st through August 31 st, sign up in person or online at Kids.Librarypoint.org! You and your child(ren) can attend fun, free programs that promote books and reading. There will be a rotating series of five self-guided, do-it-yourself activities! From June 17th through August 5th, look for the Dream Big Read! summer reading club activity in Sunday’s Free Lance-Star. Complete 4 easy Free Lance-Star activities to earn a free Liberty Lanes Bowling Pass. From July 1st through August 31st, just for showing them your reading log! get a prize! From August 1st through 31st, you could be famous! Have your picture taken and turned into a post. The posters will decorate the library in August and be ready for you to collect in September.