Libraries are important partners in efforts to help children sustain learning during the summer months by offering programs that continue content and skill learning and provide motivation to read.1
Last year, 1,066 public library branches across Australia participated in the delivery of the Summer Reading Club program; 82,507 children and young people participated in library summer holiday programs, 55,874 children formally registered in the program and an estimated 456,187 books were read. These results demonstrate that the Summer Reading Club is an excellent tool for engaging children and young people during the summer school holidays.
Involvement in the Summer Reading Club is easy, cost effective and fun!
How does it work?
Delivered online and in participating public libraries each year from 1 December to 31 January, the Summer Reading Club program connects children, young people and their families in a fun, creative and educational way. Participating libraries plan and deliver their local summer reading clubs or holiday programs in connection to the annual programming theme.
The Summer Reading Club has three key components:
- An annual theme to guide library-based Summer Reading Club programming.
- Merchandise, marketing materials and program templates, used as incentives and in the development of in-house resources to support local level programming and
- The SRC Club website; an interactive component of the SRC website for children and young people created to extend SRC programming into homes, support connections to literature and provide exposure to Australian authors and illustrators. The content and activities on this site are updated each year to align with the annual theme.
The program is non-competitive, recreational in nature and attracts readers and non-readers from a wide range of social and economic backgrounds and geographical contexts.
The program is divided into three levels with age appropriate activities for each level. The following age groups are a guide and are not intended to restrict participants who are above or below their average age reading level:
- Preschool – children under 5 years;
- Primary – children between 6-11 years;
- Secondary – children 12+ years.
Ideally, libraries participating in the Summer Reading Club will incorporate all elements of the program into their summer holiday programming.
Why should I get involved?
“Library programs allow participants to develop strong, deep and productive connections with their library, its collections and staff, other participants and their community. [Delivery of the Summer Reading Club program is] core to library operations as [it has] the capacity to efficiently deliver real and significant benefits to individuals and communities.” Guidelines, Standards and Outcome Measures for Australian Public Libraries, July 2016, p39.
The Summer Reading Club is designed to be a flexible, fun and practical program that can be adapted to suit individual library’s requirements. Large or small, the program can be as simple as registering a young reader’s participation online to programming a series of SRC theme-based activities and events to be delivered during the summer holidays.
Participating libraries receive access to a suite of themed artwork, promotional materials and reading incentives, and programming ideas which support the delivery of a high-quality, low cost summer reading club program to children and young people across Australia.
How do I get involved?
If your library branch or service has not participated in the Summer Reading Club, and you’d like to be involved, registration is easy. Over 1,000 Australian Library branches are already participating!
Simply, register your interest to participate via the Register page of this site.
An email will be sent to you confirming your participation in the Australian Summer Reading Club and you will be added to the growing numbers of library branches participating across the country.
How do I keep informed?
As part of the registration process, your details are added to an email distribution list. All information pertaining to the Summer Reading Club is distributed via email.
To contact the Summer Reading Club program coordinators directly, visit the Contact Us page for SRC Contact information.
1. (Institute of Museum and Library Services. (2013) Growing Young Minds: How Museums and Libraries Create Lifelong Learners, 21. Retrieved from http://www.imls.gov/assets/1/AssetManager/GrowingYoungMinds.pdf)