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Kids reading program prevents 'summer slide'

With summer right around the corner, we’re gearing up at Elmhurst Public Library for our annual summer reading program. The Kids’ Library will be particularly busy as 5,000 Elmhurst children – about half of all kids in Elmhurst – participate in the program. At any given time in the Kids’ Library in June, July, and August, we have dozens of people reading books, learning on the computers, checking out the fish tank, and logging their books to earn special prizes.

This summer, you can experiment in the wonders of reading and science like never before. Elmhurst Public Library’s science summer reading program theme brings experimental wonders, scientific adventures, and elemental stories right to Elmhurst.

One reason why the summer reading program is so important is to avoid what experts call the “summer slide.” Studies show that this noted decrease in reading skills occurs when students forget some of what they have learned during the summer break. Just as athletes lose some of their skills if they don’t practice, children who spend a summer vacation without books lose reading skills.

We partner with teachers in the area, hosting school groups to visit the Kids’ Library and learn more about the summer reading program. We’ve had lots of new little visitors this month at EPL. And we’ve been busy traveling to many of the schools in Elmhurst to give everyone an overview of the summer reading program. All of this works in concert to help young readers continue to work on their reading skills during the summer months.

Elmhurst kids have a great time with summer reading, but the program is also for middle school and high school students as well as adults. Everyone has the chance to win great prizes, like pizza, frozen treats, giant prize baskets, and e-readers. Join us for our kickoff day on Saturday for programs featuring juggling, puppets, face painting, and much more.

Sharon Karpiel is the department head of the Kids’ Library at Elmhurst Public Library.

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Know more

For more information about the summer reading program, visit

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