Burlington Library Launches Summer Reading Program and Activities

School may be out (or nearly over) for the summer, but that doesn’t mean kids should take a break from reading.

That’s why the Burlington Public Library is once again offering its eight-week summer reading program, a seasonal library staple since at least the 1940s.

“Our theme this year is ‘Read the Colors of Your World’,” library director Rhonda Frevert told Burlington City Council on Tuesday. “The real theme of summer reading for me is the same every year, and that focuses on the loss of summer reading.”

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Frevert explained that children can lose between two and three months of reading skills over the summer months, which means four to six weeks of retraining arrives in the fall when students return to school for a estimated cost of $ 1,500 per student.

In addition, this loss can be cumulative. Children who do not read during the summer months may fall as far as a full grade level behind their expected reading level by grade three, and the gap may widen from there.

“If you’re not at the reading level in third grade, you’re more likely not to graduate from high school,” Frevert said. “I’m still struck by this because it’s such a young age to be on this path.”

This loss can be avoided by just two to three hours of reading per week, or between 17 and 25 minutes per day.

Participants can follow their reading using the reading journals available at the library as well as online at burlington.lib.ia.us/services/children/summer-reading. Those who read at least five days a week through August 2 will be eligible for a prize for that week. Frevert said 60 companies and individuals have donated to the program.

The program is not limited to children of primary age. Pre-teens, teens and adults are also encouraged to participate.

“We always have these (registration forms) at the youth office, and when parents come to register their children, we say, ‘How about you register too? “Because really parents can do so much by setting a good example in reading too,” Frevert said.

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Burlington Public Library offering a variety of summer activities

The library also offers a wide range of summer activities, many of which will take place at Crapo Park. Live entertainment will take place at 2 p.m. every Tuesday at the kiosk, while other events, such as crafts, kindergarten, family story time, STEM activities for grade 3 students. in eighth grade, and more, will take place on Wednesdays and Thursdays in the park’s large park. refuge house.

Other self-guided activities are also encouraged. Children who complete at least eight of the 12 activities listed next to the Kids’ Reading Journal by August 2 will win a book. These activities include creating chalk art, searching for fireflies at sunset, planting a garden, and completing the riverside library obstacle course.

Work continues Wednesday on the Burlington Public Library's new riverside obstacle course.

In an effort to provide young people with something to do while everything was closed due to the pandemic, library staff first painted the obstacle course near the old Big Muddy building last summer .

“Kids use it year round,” said Burlington Mayor Jon Billups, who runs the obstacle course regularly to and from Bluff Harbor Marina.

Frevert said staff were painting a new obstacle course this week with paint donated by Diamond Vogel.

Frevert also pointed out that the library is focusing on outreach this year and will be attending the Jefferson Street Farmers Market regularly, including today, with TICOS, the library’s teen counselor club, rocketing.

The bookmobile, which is actually a van owned by a library employee, will also do the trick. Frevert said she hopes the library will have a designated vehicle to use as a bookmobile by next year.

Virtual programming will also continue to be available during the summer months. For a full schedule of in-person and virtual events, visit burlington.lib.ia.us/events. Registration for many events will be required.

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Free bus rides for children this summer

The City of Burlington is once again offering free bus rides for children this summer.

From June 7 to August 22, kids can visit the Art Center of Burlington, which offers a range of summer art camps, the Burlington Public Library, Dankwardt Pool and the YMCA for free.

Because BUS is funded by the Federal Transit Administration, those who take city buses must wear a mask (the federal mask mandate for public transportation remains in effect until at least September 13). Deputy City Manager for Public Works Nick MacGregor said masks will be available on buses for those who need them.

To plan a trip, call Burlington Urban Service at (319) 753-8162.

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Burlington Summer Camp and Swim Lessons

The Burlington Summer Day Camp, hosted at Perkins Park, will begin Monday and run through August 13. Registration for the program is $ 75 per week per child. There is also a one-time registration fee of $ 75 due at registration.

The camp runs from 7:30 a.m. to 5:15 p.m. Monday to Friday. Registrants must be at least 5 years old and entering first year to participate.

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The registration fees for each week will be due on the Thursday preceding the week of participation. If payment for the week has not been made on that day, a deposit fee of $ 15 will be charged at the deposit that Monday.

The city will also be offering swimming lessons for children 6 and older from June 14 to July 29. The cost of registration is $ 40.

For more information or to register for a summer camp or swimming lessons, visit teamsideline.com/sites/burlingtoniowa/home.

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