The Wichita Public Library’s annual Summer Reading Program is scheduled to begin on May 25 this year. The program typically enrolls more than 10,000 local children and teens who commit to reading over the summer break.
Designed to fight the “summer brain drain,” a name given to the measurable learning loss children experience over the summer months, the Summer Reading Program helps children to continue to engage in learning outside of the classroom.
Research shows that students who do not engage in learning over the summer get lower test scores.
The Summer Reading Program offers different age groups for children, allowing them to participate at the appropriate level. Children who will be entering grades 6 through 12 can enroll in the Teens Read portion of the program, while children ages 3 through 5th grade will be placed in the Kids Read portion. During the Program, children will keep track of the number of days on which they read for at least 20 minutes. An additional age group is available for parents of babies and toddlers under the age of three. This program, called Baby Bookworm, provides learning activities that promote early literacy skills.
Enrollment is available at any of Wichita’s eight libraries. The Libraries will also have printed reading logs for parents and children to use when tracking reading time. This year marks the first in which enrollment will be available online. Parents and Children can enroll and track reading progress on the Library’s website.
The program will run through July 20 and reading will be rewarded with prizes, offering an incentive for participants. Nearly 100 children’s events offered through the library are scheduled to coincide with the Summer Reading Program. The full list of events can be found at the events page on the Library's website.
The Library's Summer Reading Program and events are free.