BURTON —Telling mom and dad they are bored this summer was unnecessary for students in the Kearsley Community Schools district. Kindergarten through eighth grade students had the opportunity to pick out books to take home to read during the summer break.
“Our exiting kindergarten through fourth graders selected three books at the end of the year and our exiting fifth through seventh grade students who joined the Summer Book Clubs picked out two books,” said Jane Fonger, Title I coordinator at Kearsley Community Schools.
“Students can swap those books out at the bookmobile book clubs events throughout the summer,” Fonger added. “We’ve used federal title I and state 31a funds to support this program. The goal of the program is to get kids to not only read throughout the summer, but also to enjoy reading books that they picked. We also wanted to promote the resources for family activities by visiting different locations in our community.”
Fonger said reading over the summer helps kids continue to build on the reading skills and vocabulary skills they used during the school year, avoiding what is commonly known as “summer slide.”
For the incoming sixth through eighth grade students, there are 17 different books that were selected by teachers and students which included different themes and genres that are of high interest and relevant to middle school aged students. Each book had a theme that included overcoming challenges. Some of these books included “Swing It, Sunny” by Jennifer L. Holm and Matthew Holm, “Drums, Girls, and Dangerous Pies” by Jordan Sonnenbuck” and “Soar” by Joan Bauer.
“We hope that kids will not only read for fun but also to learn empathy for those who are different from themselves and gain a growth mindset for overcoming challenges in their lives,” Fonger said. “We have many different titles and levels of books for our kindergarten through fifth grade students. The bookmobile events have been happening for several years now for the elementary students. So, we have a large collection of books at a variety of levels and genres from which kids can choose.”
Kearsley staff members are preparing to see Kearsley kids and families from 5-7 p.m. July 24 at Richfield Park.
“Richfield Park is a great place for families to enjoy the outdoors and have fun together. We thought that our families could come out to play and pick out a few more books to read at the same time,” Fonger said.
A bookmobile event will be held from 9:45-10:45 a.m. Aug. 6 at Pumpkin Patch.
“Pumpkin Patch is where our latchkey program is located,” Fonger said. “This gives us the perfect opportunity to get books in kids’ hands and makes it more convenient for the working parents of our latchkey kids.”
A bookmobile event from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Aug. 6 in the Richfield Bowl parking will end the Kearsley bookmobile event for the season.
“Richfield Bowl is one our community activity centers,” Fonger said. “The people at Richfield Bowl have supported Kearsley Schools and collaborated with us on numerous events and activities. It’s a great place for families to enjoy time together and it’s an easily accessible location for our families.”
Fonger said Kearsley staff hopes the kids who participated in the bookmobile events will love reading and choose to read as a leisure activity or to learn throughout life.