‘All-star’ reading program a hit

The Fort Frances Public Library once again is offering local youngsters incentives to read during the summer months.
In an effort to bridge the gap between the end of one school year and the beginning of the next, the library—with the help of the Fort Frances Kiwanis Club—has set up the “All-Star Reader” program for children aged three and up.
“It is most important for kids in grades one, two, and three,” stressed librarian Andrea Avis. “We have had lots of good responses from teachers saying they appreciate our efforts.
“They say they can tell which students have taken part in the program,” she added.
The program is simple. Every day the library is open, except for Thursday afternoons, participants can choose books at their reading level to take home.
Once they’ve read the books, they can bring them back to the library and give a short oral report to a librarian about them.
These reports are based on the roll of a die. Questions like “What is your favourite part of the book?” or “Who is your favourite character?” are printed on the sides of it.
The student must roll the die and answer the question that comes up to officially complete the book. Youngsters can submit as many as three book reports in one day.
Prizes are awarded for every five books the children read and report upon. And there is a grand prize offered to those who complete 20 books over the course of the summer.
“Last year, 90 kids got the grand prize but over 200 participated [in the program],” said Avis.
“We are already on pace to break that,” she added, pointing to the wall where participants’ names are displayed.
Grand prize winners will be announced at the end-of-summer party. Only those who read and reported on 10 books earn an invitation.
The program already has 70 children enrolled in its first week alone. Among them is Cynthia Hudson, seven, who visits the library for a variety of reasons.
“I like looking through the books and also feeding the guinea pigs, Gus and Booky,” she said as she tightly held on to three books she just completed.
The books—called “Nora and the Great Bear,” “The Night the Stars Flew,” and “Nora Stars”—all have a special meaning to her.
“I picked them because they all start with ‘N,’” she giggled.