Educators encourage kids to read even more during the summer

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MARIETTA, Ohio (WTAP) - Libraries are everywhere but for many they're hidden in plain sight. The summer is a time to relax for students but educators and library workers say it's also the best time to start reading.

Educators are encouraging to students to visit their local libraries and start reading whatever you like.

"Summer is a chance for them to read whatever their interest is," Phillips Elementary Principal Kristi Lantz said, "so I know that my son is interested in ghostbusters and the muppets and things like that that are normally not incorporated into school."

"There's no stress on them to perform for testing or anything else," Washington County Public Library youth services coordinator Julie Stacy said. "It's just pure fun and they learn so much quicker that way."

Almost 300 kids have signed up for the library's summer reading program, where they'll get prizes for tracking all the books they read.

"They keep reading they're going to increase their vocabulary," Stacy added, "and we can see a difference even from the books they will check out at the beginning of the summer compared to the level at the end of the summer.

Lantz stressed it's extremely important for parents to participate in their child's reading as well, pointing out books that allow parents to read one page and their child the other. She says that kids need parents to be a good reading model.

"It's our job as educators and parents to make sure children have access to the resources they need," Lantz said, "so if everyone can please make sure that you're reading with your child, 15 minutes every day, that would make a huge impact in the long run."

For more information on summer programs, visit the library's website (under related links in top right corner of page; mobile devices bottom of page) or any of its six local branches.