- Associated Press - Thursday, July 9, 2015

CARBONDALE, Ill. (AP) - School just ended and the children are already bored.

So, how about a trip to the library?

Many libraries offer summer reading programs for children. The programs offer incentives for reading, and some have a full lineup of programs and activities to go along with a theme. This year’s state summer reading program theme is “Read to the Rhythm.”

Loretta Broomfield, director of Sallie Logan Public Library in Murphysboro, said children have access to libraries and books during the school year in their classrooms and schools. Summer reading programs give children access to books during the months when school is not in session to keep reading skills sharp.

“And it’s fun, too,” Broomfield said.

Debby Appleton, program director at Benton Public Library, said summer reading programs give children a chance to read something new.

“They are no longer required to read every day because school is out. Reading during the summer keeps them in the habit of reading,” Appleton said. “You come into the library and find a new genre or topic for summer reading.”

Registration will begin Monday for the summer reading program at Sallie Logan Public Library, which is following the state theme.

“Last year, we only did programming for the youngest age group. This year, we will be doing programming for children through eighth grade,” Broomfield said. “Sherry Carlock is busy planning activities for children of all ages, including guest speakers, musical activities and special games.”

Broomfield said details for the programs are not quite set. Plans also are under way for several adult programs that are a continuation of the craft classes offered at the library during the past school year.

Benton also will use the state theme “Read to the Rhythm,” but Appleton said she is taking it in her own direction. Some of the topics will be “Red Solo Cup,” ”Singing in the Rain,” ”Rock ‘n’ Roll” and “didgeridoo and Some Fun, Too.”

Margaret Nesbit, one of the founders of I Can Read! of Southern Illinois, said it’s important to keep children’s minds busy because idle minds get into trouble.

“I think it’s very important for children to have a good place to go in the summer, especially the library. It’s a good environment, a learning environment,” said Susan Stickel, director of Benton Public Library.

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Source: The (Carbondale) Southern Illinoisan, https://bit.ly/1TrF4gW

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Information from: Southern Illinoisan, https://www.southernillinoisan.com

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