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Parents and Caregivers Can Combat Kids' Summer Learning Loss with Fun, Creative Library Programs
June 19, 2008
With Michigan schools now out for the summer, the Library of Michigan today reminded parents and caregivers that libraries across the state offer a variety of fun and engaging summer programs that can help prevent children from losing valuable educational gains made during the school year.
"We encourage families to take advantage of the exciting educational programs, most of them at little or no cost, right at their public library," said State Librarian Nancy Robertson. "Getting children involved in reading and other learning opportunities during summer break can have a major impact on school success, and with the wide range of programs available - from reading programs to arts and crafts, storytellers to science programs, games and contests to family fun nights - there's something for everyone, even parents."
All young people experience learning losses when they do not engage in educational activities during the summer, according to the Johns Hopkins University Center for Summer Learning. Research spanning 100 years shows that students typically score lower on standardized tests at the end of summer vacation than they do on the same tests at the beginning of the summer.
Numerous studies show that summer learning opportunities improve academic outcomes for youth and lead to higher graduation rates and better preparation for college. Summer programs have also been shown to positively affect children's self-esteem, confidence and motivation. For more information on summer learning loss, please visit the Center for Summer Learning Web site at http://www.summerlearning.org.
The Library of Michigan participates in the national Collaborative Summer Library Program (CSLP), which this year has a theme of "Catch the Reading Bug" for children and "Metamorphosis @ Your Library" for teens. The program's 46 state members provide high-quality, low-cost summer reading program materials for children. The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) funds many of the programs through the Library Services and Technology Act. To learn more about CSLP, please visit: http://www.cslpreads.org.
Summer Learning Tips
To minimize children's summer learning loss, IMLS recently offered these tips for parents:
For more information on family literacy, please visit the National Center for Family Literacy Web site at http://www.famlit.org. Many of the materials are in English and Spanish.
The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation's 122,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. The Institute's mission is to create strong libraries and museums that connect people to information and ideas. The Institute works at the national level and in coordination with state and local organizations to sustain heritage, culture, and knowledge; enhance learning and innovation; and support professional development. To learn more about the Institute, please visit http://www.imls.gov.
The Library of Michigan is part of the Department of History, Arts and Libraries (HAL). Dedicated to enriching quality of life and strengthening the economy by providing access to information, preserving and promoting Michigan's heritage and fostering cultural creativity, the department also includes the Mackinac Island State Park Commission, the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs and the Michigan Historical Center.
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