standard Record Number of “Summer Readers” for BPL

Focusing on STEM Education, Program Reaches more than 126,000
Brooklyn Public Library's main branch (Wikimedia Commons)

The Brooklyn Public Library’s main branch (Wikimedia Commons)

More than 126,000 children and teens participated in the Brooklyn Public Library’s summer reading program this year, exceeding all previous turnouts of the last ten years. Library officials praised the improved levels of participation.

“When children read over the summer, they are more likely to start school prepared and become lifelong readers,” said Linda E. Johnson, President & CEO of Brooklyn Public Library. ” This was a great year for summer reading, and we know that 2015 will be better yet.”

In partnership with the New York City Department of Education, Brooklyn Public Library’s Summer Reading Program aims to prevent “summer slide” by encouraging Brooklyn’s young readers to visit one of the library’s 60 branches throughout the borough.

Summer breaks cause the average student to lose up to one month of instruction per year, with disadvantaged students being disproportionately affected. The Summer Reading Program aims to keep children and teens active and engaged by offering book lists, activities, gameboards for kids, and reading challenge cards for teens and adults. Every year, BPL also offers a Summer Reading Program for adults, which includes a lecture series, book discussions and an adult Summer Reading book list.

To promote the Summer Reading Program, library staff visited schools, community centers, daycare centers, street fairs, and houses of worship to engage with parents and students on the importance of summer reading.

This year’s theme, “Fizz, Boom, Read,” encouraged students to interact with the principles of STEM – science, technology, engineering and math. The library offered a summer science club, games, videos and educational challenges to inspire kids from pre-K through high school to explore the sciences. The Robot Engineers Game, which invited kids to research, design, and build a model of their ideal robot friend, led to some very innovative creations. Everyone who finished a summer reading game board or challenge was entered into a drawing for iPads, Beats headphones, Buddyphones and Sparki robots.

Brooklyn Public Library (BPL), an independent library system for the 2.5 million residents of Brooklyn, is the fifth largest library system in the United States with 60 neighborhood libraries located throughout the borough. BPL offers free programs and services for all ages and stages of life, including a large selection of books in more than 30 languages, author talks, literacy programs and public computers. BPL’s eResources, such as eBooks and eVideos, catalog information and free homework help, are available to customers of all ages 24 hours a day at www.bklynlibrary.org.

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