Trent Ernst, Editor
Despite the weather we’ve been having the last few weeks, summer is here, if only in name. Grad happened this last weekend, and on Wednesday of last week, the Summer Reading Club had its grand launch.
Parents who’ve had kids in the program will notice that this year’s program is being run slightly differently than in previous years.
The big difference, says Chris “Mr Chris” Norbury, is that the emphasis won’t be on big prizes for everyone at the end of year. “We are still having participation prizes for everyone,” he says, “we want to focus more on the daily programming, so we’re putting more of our funding towards that.”
Samantha “Miss Sam” Petrovic says that all the kids will get a reading pamphlet, like usual, but there will be weekly prize draws and reading challenges. Kids will earn points not only for reading, but for doing additional reading-related activities. “Come in dressed as your favourite book character, and you’ll get additional points. Once you hit 25 points, you’ll get an entry into the weekly draw.”
And at the end of the summer, one grand prize draw will be drawn from all the kids that are registered for reading club. This year, the prize is a half hour helicopter tour of the Tumbler Ridge area, provided by Ridge Rotors.
However, only kids that are officially registered will be eligible for prizes. Kids have until July 24 to sign up for the Reading Club.
Mr Chris says the other big change is that the reading club activities have been divided into two groups. “We wanted to target each group directly,” he says. “What’s fun for a four year old isn’t always fun for a nine year old. We have these distinct groups that come in to use our services, and we wanted to cater to them. The best way to do that is to have two separate groups.”
So this year, kids ages seven and up are on Team T-Rex, who will be meeting for summer programs Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 3 pm at the library. Kids age six and under will be meeting on Tuesday and Thursday at 3 pm. Older kids are welcome on these days, too, but the activities will be based on the younger children’s activity level. “We’ll be sticking to a more storytime theme,” says Mr Chris. “Stories, songs, simple craft activities, while the older kids will be getting a lot more advanced crafts. Their ability level is higher, so we want to challenge them.”
The theme for this year’s reading club is “Play.” Miss Sam says the focus will be a little more on getting outside and moving a bit more. “We’ll still be reading stories,” she says. “But we want to have a little more physical activity, and have some fun with it.”
Some special activities will include making clay fish, led by Carmen Drapeau from the Chamber of Commerce, a trip to the Community Garden to plant seeds, and a robotics workshop on July 23.
As expected, numbers are down this year, with 60 kids having signed up so far, though they still have about a month before registration ends.