Keeping Kids Engaged this Summer


Diana Gish/KMXT

Kids love the freedom of summer vacation but for parents it can be a bit of a struggle. For those having trouble getting children moving in a positive direction, the Kodiak Arts Council and the A. Holmes Johnson Memorial Library have some ideas. On this week’s "Talk of the Rock," host Diana Gish was joined by Ellie Werbe , the director of Children’s Services for the library and Tom Quass, executive director of the Kodiak Arts Council:

(Summertime 1 "You know, these … that’ll help ‘em.")

Quass said that another benefit of reading is the opportunity it gives kids to explore life beyond their own horizons.

While summer reading programs have been around for decades, these days they’ve expanded to promote a variety of literacy-enhancing activities, as Werbe (were-bee) explains.

(Summertime 2 "The Summer Reading … during the month.")

Enrollment in the summer reading program is free and available for kids from kindergarten through 12th grade. Participants can qualify for prizes by turning in a record of what they’ve read. For the social reader, the library offers three book clubs: one for kindergarten to third grade, one for 4th through 6th grade and one for 7th through 12th graders. The club members read books from next year’s "Battle of the Books" reading list then meet to discuss the books, engage in activities and enjoy refreshments.

So far, around a hundred kids have signed up for the summer reading program. Werbe said she’s pleased to see that even teens are showing up at the library this summer. Some come to volunteer with the reading program and some come to take part in the other activities.

(Summertime 3 "Game time is … weeks in advance.")

The Kodiak Arts Council’s Sum’Art program for kids is also seeing a high number of participants according to Quass.

(Summertime 4 "The summer arts … we’re gonna do.")

Quass said that the arts classes do more than just keep kids busy.

(Summertime 5 "And of course … to the public.")

Both the Sum’Arts program and the library’s summer reading program are still accepting applicants.

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