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News, Santa Monica, Library

More Than 4000 Children Participate In Santa Monica Library Reading Program

Santa Monica Public Library broke children reading records this summer.
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Santa Monica Public Library broke children reading records this summer.

Posted Oct. 3, 2013, 8:47 am

Brenton Garen / Editor-in-Chief

Santa Monica Public Library reports the library’s 2013 summer reading program for babies through teenagers saw an amazing increase of 20 percent, with more than 4,000 children and teens participating.

The Friends of the Santa Monica Public Library sponsored printed materials, programs, and prizes for the 10-week program, which is designed to help children and teens increase literacy skills during the summer months while on their school break.

fact, compared to 10 summers ago, we have almost tripled participation in our summer reading program. As a result of this fun and positive reading promotion, children and teens read over 1.9 million minutes during the summer months.

The library offered 320 story times and reading-related programs during the summer (that’s 32 programs per week), with 14,707 in attendance.

Kids and teens also wrote 570 book reviews as a result of the program, which were posted for other students to read and get recommendations on what to read next.

This summer’s reading program once again included the library's "Baby & Me” club, which engages parents and their babies by providing them with a free board book to add to their baby’s library, as well as printed materials to help their babies get a head start on literacy.

Teen participation was stronger than ever, reaching some milestones as well. For the first time, more than 800 teens participated, a 30 percent increase over last summer’s participation. Teens also wrote 221 book reviews.

Those who completed the program (reading 30 hours or more) attended an end-of-the-summer pizza party to celebrate their achievements.

Other teen programs included a Teen Writers’ Day with local award-winning authors.

In addition, 260 free hardcover copies of John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars, the Samohi summer reading book selection, were given out to Samohi students. This book giveaway was sponsored by the Santa Monica Kiwanis Club.

For more information about free library programs, visit or call the Youth Services Department at 310.458.8621.

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