HOOKSETT — The Hooksett Public Library’s children’s summer reading program begins Saturday, but the incentivized curriculum isn’t just for kids. This month, many local adults began their own program, with the possibility of winning a Kindle Fire HDX as the carrot to encourage them.
“We have events and activities planned for all ages,” said Mathew Bose, Reference Librarian/Assistant Director. “We really try to focus on a community-wide literary effort and a lot of our events appeal to a wide audience, because we feel it’s important to bring a multigenerational audience to the library.”
Bose said significant amounts of research indicate that there is a drop-off in learning for students who don’t read and continue to exercise their math and science skills during summer break.
“There’s also great research that indicates if kids see parents reading, they’re much more likely to read and find success in a educational environment,” he said.
The Friends of Hooksett Library raised money for and donated all the summer reading program’s prizes, including the Kindle.
Each program has a unique age-specific theme associated with the recent STEM education movement, which focuses on science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, said Bose.
The children’s reading program, “Fizz! Boom! Read!,” targeted at children ages 11 and younger, begins Saturday with a “Dig it, Dump it, Move it” activity, where children have the opportunity to see, touch and climb into various town vehicles, from police cars to fire trucks to snow plows. The event takes place from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the library.
Then, children get a sheet of reading tickets and throughout the summer they receive a reading ticket for every five books they read or listen to or for every hour they read. Children age 3 and younger earn tickets through early-literacy activities. Children then enter their tickets for weekly drawings with prizes ranging from free books, ice cream from McDonald’s and complimentary passes to Cowabunga’s to prize packs loaded with other surprises.
The teen summer reading program, “Spark a Reaction” is for ages 11 to 17, and maintains the same standards as their junior counterparts for receiving tickets and prizes.
The adults summer reading program is “Literally Elements” and each participant receives a bingo card.
“The bingo card is completed by reading books, listening to books downloading books, trying different library services and even things like borrowing a cookbook and making a recipe,” said Bose.
The library’s goal is to reach 2,000 hours read among participants. If that number is reached or exceeded, Miss Vickie (Desharnais) and Miss Ellen (Tweedy), the children’s librarians, have volunteered to be slimed.
The library also has many other events planned for the summer, including a visit from popular wildlife biologist Ben Kilham, who presents “Bear Talk” on Thursday, July 31, at 6:30 p.m., and Chef Nicole from T-Bones Great American Eatery and Cactus Jack’s is hosting an edible science program.
There is no cost associated with the library’s summer events and programs. Additional information is available at hooksettlibrary.org.