Thursday, August 7, 2008

Summer Reading Club

I'm taking off my librarian hat and writing as a parent for this one, and I will start with a confession: if it wasn't for the Summer Reading Club, I would not be helping my daughter learn to read this summer.
Wow, that's a nasty admission for a librarian to make. My daughter, who will be starting first grade this month, is at a critical moment of learning to read. She went thorough phonetics in kindergarten and learned the different vowel and consonant sounds, and she is now at the point where she needs to practice, practice, practice. As someone who reads all the time, I forgot how much darn work it is when you are first starting out and how hard it is to enjoy a story when you are slowly sounding it out word by word. It's work for her, and it's work for me. It's much more fun to read a book out loud to her (especially now that we've moved from picture books to chapter books, which have a little bit more plot to them), but that's not what she really needs right now - she needs to read herself.
And it's the library's Summer Reading Club that has kept us both going. If you want to fill those reading booklets in, and you want your prizes, and you want your name in the big drawings, you have to keep reading. Just the visual incentive of coloring in those little leaves in the booklet has been enough to keep my daughter plugging away at her books, and I can hear the huge progress she has made this summer. She is rapidly reaching the point where reading will be a joy, not work, and I would like to thank Summer Reading Club (and the Children's library staff that put it all together) for giving me and my child the incentive to read.

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