HUGE INCREASE IN CHILDREN’S BOOK LOANS BY RUAPEHU LIBRARIES
The huge success of the children’s summer reading programme along with other activities has seen Ruapehu libraries have an extremely busy summer holiday period.
Community Librarian, Fiona Thomas, said that the yearly themed summer reading programme for kids from six to 12 years was getting bigger every year and this summer we had the largest number of kids ever taking part.
“This is highlighted by the fact that Ruapehu libraries have loaned out 600-700 more children’s books over this summer to date than we have in any summer period for the last five years,” she said.
“We had over 50 kids from around the district complete the programme with the theme this year being ‘Get Carried Away with Reading’.”
“In addition to the reading programme all three libraries held a special crafts day called ‘Up, Up and Away’ which had the kids doing flying themed crafts and activities and Ohākune library had an crafts table open every day.”
“Kids love the summer reading programme with a lot of them coming back year after year,” she said.
“When the children register for the programme they get given a special registration pack that includes a folder full of puzzles and other activities and each time they check-in after reading a book they get a small gift such as a book bag, pen, pencil case or writing pad, etc.”
“At the end of the programme we always have a ‘Finale Party’ to celebrate the success of all the kids who took part.”
Mrs Thomas said that many of the children who take part in the summer reading programme often go on to become regular library users which has huge benefits for their education.
“All the school holiday activities play an important role in getting kids excited about their library, reading and feeling comfortable about using all the ‘kid friendly’ things we have here,” she said.
“One of council’s aims is to promote the library as a purposeful leisure activity along with encouraging the involvement of caregivers, the fun of reading, and having books in the home.”
“We have also had success with other family members with mums, dads, aunties, uncles and even whole whanau joining the library and starting to read regularly.”
“It’s always free to join the library and all books are free to loan.”
Mrs Thomas added that reading is one of the most powerful tools for creating lifelong learners and parents and caregivers can give their children a powerful advantage by encouraging them to enjoy reading.