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      Summer reading programs help students obtain knowledge

      The calendar may say July, but that's not stopping some students from learning. They're actually participating in summer reading programs.

      It's no secret that kids who don't keep up with reading over the summer experience what many call a summer slide. But the Amarillo Public Library's reading program is helping them avoid that. Pronews 7 is featuring it in this week's Region 16 Spotlight on Education.

      When it comes to summer time, kids think of fun in the sun, not reading. But Amarillo's libraries are reaching out to Region 16 students and inviting them to get involved in their summer reading club.

      "Its all about reading during the summer its about rewarding people for their time spent reading and having fun activities that enhance the enjoyment of reading," said Amarillo Public Library, Stacy Clopton Yates. "You keep track of your time spent reading. Small children keep track in 15 minutes. Teens and adults keep track in hours spent reading. As you reach a milestone on your reading log you come to the library and get a prize".

      One of those prizes is a brand new book when the booklet is completed. Each branch of the library not only offers that club, but also has story times and gets the kids involved in fun activities like learning how to garden.

      "Our kids have the best time at summer reading club activities. And this summer the theme has been all about gardening. So we've been digging in the dirt and we've been having garden parties and we've been learning about bugs," said Yates.

      It's the reading and hands on activities that help students avoid losing some of that knowledge they gained during the school year.

      "It's actually a very well documented phenomenon that kids who don't read during the summer they don't start where they left off in the spring when they go back to school in the fall. People call it the summer slide".

      The summer reading program will go another two weeks, so it's not to late to get your kids involved. You can do that by calling any of the branch locations.