More options for reading programme
When schools and their libraries close over summer, children’s reading progress can slow or regress.
For the past 21 years, Palmerston North’s Summer Reading Programme, backed by the Eastern and Central Community Trust, has kept pages flicking over despite the distractions of the six-week break.
Open for 4-year-olds to 13-yearolds, children register for the 600 available places on the programme, which because of the one-on-one consultations with library staff and volunteers, means the positions have to be balloted.
Children’s programmes coordinator Rhonda Chenery said the children reported in four times to share what they had read, answer questions, fill in their colourful Wild About Reading folder, and receive a milestone reward.
If each child received four individual consultations during the programme in the leadup to the January 18, 2018, finale, that was 2400 one-on-one sessions.
That’s the reason it has to be capped, though every effort will be made to accommodate as many readers as possible.
‘‘The value is not only with the child, it involves the whole family,’’ Chenery said.
Last year along with English, te reo Ma¯ori and Pasifika reading progammes, the library introduced Mandarin, Japanese, Spanish, German and French.
Chenery said the multilingual approach was something that hadn’t been tried before anywhere else, and with 60 kids opting to read books in another language, they counted it as a success, adding Thai and Korean this year.
The library’s Jeremy Corroenne said there was a good collection of books in those languages to support the multilingual aspect of the programme.
‘‘It’s a great opportunity to use first or second languages outside the home, and outside the classroom - if that’s a language they are learning,’’ Corroenne said.
The programme was branching out with report-in venues too, making use of Memorial Park, the Esplanade, Ashhurst Domain and on December 2, the day the Christmas tree lights are turned on, The Square.
Volunteers are also wanted to help, especially if they are fluent in any of the non-English languages.
‘‘We need to get any who want to be involved on board as quickly as possible because there is an orientation process,’’ Chenery said.
Ballot registrations were open through any library branch until Sunday, November 12, with the programme commencing on Monday, November 27. For those who make it through to the January finale, there are book prizes.
Details could be found on the Palmerston North City Library website.
Children gather at the Esplanade to enjoy the grand finale of the city Library’s Summer Reading Programme.