Tag Archives: Summer Reading

Nebraska Libraries Report 1,000,000 Minutes of Reading

News Release

July 7, 2020

Denise Harders
Central Plains Library System

Summer reading programs are helping students become better readers

Hastings, Nebraska – Since mid-May, more than 100 Nebraska libraries have been carrying out Summer Reading Programs that have allowed patrons of all ages to log their reading progress.

As of July 7th, Readers have logged:
1,086,227 minutes read
10,457 books completed
110,272 pages read
1,928 literacy activities completed

The Nebraska Library Commission and the Nebraska Regional Library Systems have worked to engage more than 100 libraries in summer reading programs through an innovative reading app called Reader Zone. These programs consist of participants of all ages with the majority being kindergarten through 6th grade.

COVID-19 has greatly impacted libraries in every corner of the state. Libraries that typically carry out in-person events for summer reading have turned to virtual programs that allow them to remain engaged with their communities.

“We are excited to reach one million minutes and we thank all our hard-working librarians and our wonderful patrons for their dedication to literacy and reading,” said Denise Harders, Director of the Central Plains Library System. “But we’re not stopping at one million!  I invite all Nebraskans to continue reading through July and join our August Reading Challenge.”

The August Reading Challenge will run from Aug. 1st– Aug. 31st. The challenge will be to read 1,000 minutes within the month. Anyone is invited to participate in these programs through your local library.

“Seeing Nebraska readers reach 1 million minutes demonstrates that there are many dedicated public librarians and engaged families throughout the state. We are extremely proud of Nebraska and I am certain that they will double or triple their reading numbers before the end of the summer. Students will return to school in the fall with their hard-earned reading skills sharpened and ready to learn,” Jake Ball, creator of Reader Zone.

Reader Zone is web-based reading program and app that helps organizations of all kind to build and deploy meaningful reading programs. Reader Zone offers a mobile app that makes participation in reading programs simple and rewarding for readers of all ages.

Nebraska’s Regional Library Systems are four non-profit corporations governed by boards representative of libraries and citizens in the region. Systems provide access to improved library services by facilitating cooperation among all types of libraries and media centers within the counties included in each System area.  

As the state library agency, the Nebraska Library Commission is an advocate for the library and information needs of all Nebraskans. The mission of the Library Commission is statewide promotion, development, and coordination of library and information services, bringing together people and information. The most up-to-date news releases from the Nebraska Library Commission are always available on the Library Commission website, http://nlc.nebraska.gov/publications/newsreleases.

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Friday Reads: The Pumpkin War by Cathleen Young

I don’t know about you, but reading during this pandemic has been a challenge. Between working from home, keeping a school-age kid on track with his lessons and a preschooler out of the cookie jar, not to mention feeding everyone 3-5 times a day (why are we so hungry?!?), and the constant blare of the news, I just don’t have the time or attention span to concentrate on a book. Is it just me? (Apparently not).

Fortunately, my public library recently started contact-less pickup and I got a load of middle-grade novels and picture books for the aforementioned children. The Pumpkin War by Cathleen Young was at the top of the pile.

Set on Madeline Island in Lake Superior, this is the story of a half-Irish, half-Ojibwe girl named Billie who is determined to win her town’s annual pumpkin race and get revenge on her former best friend for sabotaging her attempt the previous summer. It is also the tale of how every story has two sides, growing pumpkins is a full-time job, and sometimes winning isn’t something we do on our own. It was the perfect book to kick off my summer reading and yours too!

Young, Cathleen. The Pumpkin War. Random House, 2019.

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#BookFaceFriday “Let Your Voice Be Heard”

 Let the good times roll with this week’s #BookFaceFriday!

"Let Your Voice be Heard: the Life and Times of Pete Seeger" BookFace Photo

Summer Reading Programs are happening all across Nebraska right now. This week’s #BookFace selection, “Let Your Voice Be Heard: The Life and Times of Pete Seeger” by Anita Silvey (Clarion Books, 2016) is the perfect fit since the Summer 2018 Reading Program motto is “Libraries Rock!” and the theme is music. Almost all public libraries, and a few school libraries, offer summer reading programs in Nebraska. It’s offered to the children, teens, and sometimes adults, of various communities across the state.  Every year, the Library Commission provides a manual to public libraries in Nebraska, as well as a booklist of titles that relate to the theme.

This title comes from our large collection of children’s and young adult books sent to us as review copies from book publishers. When our Children and Young Adult Library Services Coordinator, Sally Snyder, is done with them, the review copies are available for the Library System Directors to distribute to school and public libraries in their systems.

“With the engaging, well-illustrated biography Let Your Voice Be Heard: The Life and Times of Pete Seeger, author Anita Silvey explains how this unlikely folk-music hero turned singalongs into social change.”  –The Washington Post

This week’s #BookFace model is Nebraska Library Commission’s Talking Book & Braille Service Circulation Clerk, Nicholas Westra!

Love this #BookFace & reading? We suggest checking out all the titles available for book clubs at http://nlc.nebraska.gov/ref/bookclub. Check out our past #BookFaceFriday photos on the Nebraska Library Commission’s Facebook page!

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