‘Build a Better World’ at Marie Fleche Memorial Library

Summer reading program kicks off June 26

Children can help “Build a Better World” with the Marie Fleche Memorial Library this summer.

The library’s summer reading program kicks off Monday, June 26, with special programming and reading incentives for borough kids. As in past years, the library is running its program in conjunction with the national Collaborative Summer Library Program, and this year’s theme is “Build a Better World.”

“It’s a positive theme,” Marie Fleche Memorial Library Director Christine Flynn said. “What can you contribute to make things better in your world? How can you be part of it? How can you help?”

There is no age restriction to take part in the library’s summer reading program, although the library tends to focus on preschool and elementary-aged children. The program is anchored in the Summer Story Hour, which is held on Thursdays from July 6 to Aug. 31 at 10:30 a.m. at the library.

To take part, all a child needs to do is keep track when they read or, in the case of younger kids, have a book read to them. Reading logs are available at the library. Every time a child reads for one hour, they can receive a coupon at the library. Kids will receive a small prize one time a week for submitting coupons. Coupons are dropped in a bucket and drawn every Monday for weekly prizes, which are supplied by businesses in town. A grand prize — which last year was a $50 aquarium gift certificate and a myriad of other gift certificates from borough businesses — is drawn from all coupons at the End of Summer Reading Party on Thursday, Aug. 17.

“Really what they’re trying to do is to encourage children to keep reading during the summer,” Flynn said. “They want to prevent a summer slide — backsliding — where they’ve forgotten what they learned during the school year.”

The Marie Fleche Memorial Library coordinates with local schools to produce its summer reading list, although Flynn stresses summer reading isn’t school work — it’s fun.

In addition to encouraging summer reading, the library has planned special programming over the next two months. New on the agenda are make-and-take crafts, where children can stop by anytime throughout the day and create a special craft to bring home.

And while all of the library’s summer programming and activities do not necessarily pertain to the summer reading theme, much of it does, including a special visit from a pet therapy dog on July 13 and a “Build a Better Body” program on Aug. 3. Cedar Run Wildlife Refuge on Wheels will bring owls and a message of helping animals to the library on July 26, too. (Check out the library’s full list of summer programming here.)

One additional aspect Flynn wanted to highlight about this year’s summer reading program is an incentive by the Philadelphia Soul. The Arena Football League is offering a free ticket to any child who reads five books, redeemable at a designated game this summer. A parent who purchases a $20 ticket to accompany their child to the game will also be supporting the library, with $3 of each of those tickets going back to Marie Fleche.

The Marie Fleche Memorial Library is located at 49 S. White Horse Pike, Berlin. Learn more online at www.berlinboroughpubliclibrary.org.