Although students will be able to win prizes by participating in the Summer Reading Club at the Grandview Heights Public Library, the program offers youngsters an even greater reward.
"There are a lot of studies that all show that kids who keep reading during the summer come back in the fall very prepared to start back up with school," youth services librarian Rachel Rausch said. "Those students who don't keep reading will experience a summer slide and regress."
The reading club is designed to be a fun way to keep students reading during their months off from school, she said.
The library's program kicks off Tuesday, May 29, and continues through Aug. 4.
Youngsters who sign up for the club will set daily or weekly reading goals for themselves, Rausch said.
"They can read or have their parents read to them any book in any genre," she said. "It doesn't really matter as much what book they're reading, just that they are reading. If they pick a genre or subject they're interested in, it's more likely they will want to read."
The program allows students to set their own summer reading goals.
"They can choose what they and their parents think is an appropriate reading goal for them, whether that's one book a week or a certain number of pages each day," Rausch said. "Kids are at all kinds of different reading levels. It's not a one-size-fits-all kind of thing."
Students monitor their reading by filling out a summer reading log that's available on the library website, ghpl.org, or in the library's summer-events brochure.
If a child reaches a goal for a given week, he or she can choose from among three prize opportunities, Rausch said.
"They can come in and pick a prize from our treasure chest, which includes small toys and other items, or they can get a coupon from one of local sponsors, like getting a doughnut from the DK Diner or ice cream from Dairy Queen," she said.
In addition, students can choose to enter their name into the drawing for several grand prizes that will be awarded at the end of the summer.
"We'll have drawings for things like tickets to Kings Island and a ride in a police car or fire truck," Rausch said.
Students also can win prizes by completing a weekly challenge activity at the library, which could involve completing a scavenger hunt or researching at the library to find out a fact about a suggested topic, she said.
About 550 youngsters participated in the Summer Reading Club last summer, Rausch said.
The club is open to students of all ages, she said.
"That's why we try to come up with prizes like the tickets to Kings Island that might appeal to older kids," Rausch said.
Students entering grades 7-12 can sign up to serve as "volunteens" at the library.
"Our teen volunteers help us with the reading club and with some of the kids' activities we'll have during the summer, Rausch said. "It's a way the students can earn community service hours for school."
The library also has a summer reading program for adults, she said.
Adults can enter the library's biweekly prize drawings every time they read a book or digital book or listen to an audiobook during the summer. Adults may submit their entries in the designated boxes on the second floor of the library for the chance to win gift cards from local businesses.