Summer Reading Program still open for kids

    The Summer Reading Program began on June 29 and there is still time to participate. The James Memorial Public Library is again offering free programming to help engage students and families in learning activities throughout the summer and sign-ups are available on the library’s website for those wanting to get involved.

    This year’s event is titled “Imaging Your Story” and, due to COVID-19, will consist of virtual and passive programing. Participants will have the opportunity to win prizes by reading throughout the program, which ends on August 25.
    “They can register online or can come in. It’s open for all ages and prizes will be given,” Youth Services Librarian Niki Moen explained. “It will be all virtual for July. I am hoping to have one outside program at the end of August.”
    For those with multiple family members, there is an easy family management profile on the website to help manage and register members and their reading logs. Reading challenges will be broken down by age group. Birth to 35 months, called the “Great Listener” category, will need to complete 16 picture books for the challenge. Each four books logged will earn an entry to win the grand prize.
    Beginner readers, those between three and five years old, will need to log 24 picture books and both independent and family reading are encouraged. For each eight picture books logged they will earn another entry for the grand prize.
    Intermediate readers, age six to nine, will need to log 800 pages worth of reading, both independently or through family reading. Each additional 90 pages earns another chance at a grand prize.
    Advanced readers age 10 to 13 will need to log 600 minutes of reading. Each additional 60 minutes will provide an additional chance at a grand prize. The expert reader category is for those 14 through 19. These participants will need to log 1,000 pages and each additional 100 pages will earn an entry for the grand prize. Finally, adult readers 20 years old or older will need to read 10 chapter books of their choosing for an entry for a grand prize.
    According to Moen, studies show students who remain engaged in learning opportunities over summer break are less likely to regress between school years and are better equipped for learning when the new school year begins. The summer reading program is a way to provide learning opportunities for students in the community and is a fun way to remain engaged while school is out.
    Registration can be completed on the library’s website at or paper registration can be done onsite. A library card is not required to participate, but a card is required to check out books or materials from the library during the program.
    Each category of reader has its own grand prize, including gift cards to Walmart and Rolla Books and Toys, a Visa gift card for older readers, and a gift certificate to Meramec Vineyards Winery for adults. For more information, visit the library website, keep up to date with information on the James Memorial Library Facebook page, or by contact the library at 573-265-7211.