cpl to make it a great summer for cleveland's young readers

Summer traditionally is the season for kids to laze about or get shuttled off to camp by their parents. Cleveland Public Library has whipped up an imaginative way keep children engaged in reading during the hot months through its Summer Reading Club.

This year's Make it a Great Summer program will run until August 2. While it is designed to keep the minds of its young participants active and ready for a return to the classroom, that doesn't mean sitting them among dusty stacks and placing books in their hands.

In addition to reading, the club encourages children to build and create through hands-on programs at any of the system's 27 branches as well as the main library, notes Aaron Mason, assistant director of outreach programming at CPL.

"There's the traditional component of kids logging their reading over the summer, but we also wanted them actively involved," Mason says.

Creativity is at the heart of these activities aimed at Cleveland public school students in grades K-12, adds the CPL spokesman. Kids can build their own balloon rocket or balloon-powered rocket car. Another program will have them learn about movie making while creating hand-held movies using flipbook animation.

For children who read and log 10 books or more, the festivities will culminate with a free family trip to the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo on August 17. Anything that drives young people to their local library is a positive in Mason's book.

"We want to get them engaged," he says. "These activities encourage kids to keep on reading."

SOURCE: Aaron Mason
WRITER: Douglas J. Guth
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