HomeNewsArticle Display

Reading program keeping children off the summer slide

Children watch and dance with Sparky, 4th Civil Engineer Squadron fire prevention mascot, while attending the library’s summer reading program at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, N.C., June 25, 2013. Members of the 4th CES fire services flight educated the children about summer travel safety through song and dance. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Aubrey White/Released)

Children watch and dance with Sparky, 4th Civil Engineer Squadron fire prevention mascot, while attending the library’s summer reading program at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, N.C., June 25, 2013. Members of the 4th CES fire services flight educated the children about summer travel safety through song and dance. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Aubrey White/Released)

U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Brandon Sanderson, 4th Civil Engineer Squadron NCO in charge of fire prevention, reads a story to children attending the library’s summer reading program at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, N.C., June 25, 2013. This year’s summer reading program theme is “Have Book – Will Travel.” (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Aubrey White/Released)

U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Brandon Sanderson, 4th Civil Engineer Squadron NCO in charge of fire prevention, reads a story to children attending the library’s summer reading program at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, N.C., June 25, 2013. This year’s summer reading program theme is “Have Book – Will Travel.” (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Aubrey White/Released)

Kimberly Webb, 4th Force Support Squadron library director, hands out a summer reading program blanket as a raffle prize at the library at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, N.C., June 25, 2013. More than 100 children, from newborn to the age of six, attended the summer travel safety-themed puppet show as a part of the library’s summer reading program. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Aubrey White/Released)

Kimberly Webb, 4th Force Support Squadron library director, hands out a summer reading program blanket as a raffle prize at the library at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, N.C., June 25, 2013. More than 100 children, from newborn to the age of six, attended the summer travel safety-themed puppet show as a part of the library’s summer reading program. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Aubrey White/Released)

SEYMOUR JOHNSON AIR FORCE BASE, N.C. -- Jumping, running around and loud noises may seem more fit for a park or playground, but instead, children are packing into another venue.

The base library is hosting its free annual summer reading program to get children interested in reading by providing a fun, yet educational atmosphere.

"[Reading] helps me learn," said the 6-year-old daughter of Gunnery Sgt. Bryson Jones, 2d Marine Regimental Combat Team combat camera chief. "I like to read a lot of books; long books, short books, medium books. I think I've been reading books since I was three."

The five-weeklong series, running until July 24, is designed to promote reading comprehension and retention during the summer months when children are out of school. The theme of this year's program, "Have Book - Will Travel," highlights the positive aspects of traveling and also traveling safety.

"It's very important [because] some kids lose reading skills over the summer, so we like to have them here reading all summer long," said Kimberly Webb, 4th Force Support Squadron library director and program manager. "It's not just that we want them in here during the summer, but it's really an academic problem that we're trying to help with."

According to research studies from the University of Tennessee, children who read during the break gain approximately one month of reading proficiency, whereas children who do not lose up to three months. Over a child's time span in school, this deficiency can equate to years of reading development loss.

"The studies show that children lose a lot of their reading skills and academic skills during the summer," Webb said. "And so, we as librarians want to do more to keep them reading during the summer. We're really concerned about the academics of the children."

To help prevent this "summer slide," librarians are encouraging children to read by providing incentives to keep them motivated. The library has received donations to help supply books and reading logs to all participants, as well as prizes to offer to top performers in the program.

At the end of the program, the reading logs, which record children's reading hours, will be turned in and submitted to Air Force officials for eligibility for more rewards.
In addition to incentives, the program also provides an opportunity for parents to get involved with their children by engaging them in reading.

"The program is a fun atmosphere for the children and gets them involved in reading," said Tech. Sgt. Brandon Sanderson, 4th Civil Engineer Squadron NCO in charge of fire prevention and father of two children enrolled in the program. "I enjoy reading so I hope [my children] grow up enjoying reading as well."

More than 300 participants are registered in the program, but the librarians would like to see that number grow before their final celebration.

"We welcome anyone to come register, it's free," Webb said. "We just want everybody to keep up reading during the summer."

For more information about the summer reading program or other programs offered by the library, contact staff members at (919) 722-5825.


Summer reading program schedule:

Ages 0-6: Tuesdays at 10:30 a.m.

Ages 7-12: Wednesdays at 1 p.m.

Teens: Thursdays at 6 p.m.
USAF Comments Policy
If you wish to comment, use the text box below. AF reserves the right to modify this policy at any time.

This is a moderated forum. That means all comments will be reviewed before posting. In addition, we expect that participants will treat each other, as well as our agency and our employees, with respect. We will not post comments that contain abusive or vulgar language, spam, hate speech, personal attacks, violate EEO policy, are offensive to other or similar content. We will not post comments that are spam, are clearly "off topic", promote services or products, infringe copyright protected material, or contain any links that don't contribute to the discussion. Comments that make unsupported accusations will also not be posted. The AF and the AF alone will make a determination as to which comments will be posted. Any references to commercial entities, products, services, or other non-governmental organizations or individuals that remain on the site are provided solely for the information of individuals using this page. These references are not intended to reflect the opinion of the AF, DoD, the United States, or its officers or employees concerning the significance, priority, or importance to be given the referenced entity, product, service, or organization. Such references are not an official or personal endorsement of any product, person, or service, and may not be quoted or reproduced for the purpose of stating or implying AF endorsement or approval of any product, person, or service.

Any comments that report criminal activity including: suicidal behaviour or sexual assault will be reported to appropriate authorities including OSI. This forum is not:

  • This forum is not to be used to report criminal activity. If you have information for law enforcement, please contact OSI or your local police agency.
  • Do not submit unsolicited proposals, or other business ideas or inquiries to this forum. This site is not to be used for contracting or commercial business.
  • This forum may not be used for the submission of any claim, demand, informal or formal complaint, or any other form of legal and/or administrative notice or process, or for the exhaustion of any legal and/or administrative remedy.

AF does not guarantee or warrant that any information posted by individuals on this forum is correct, and disclaims any liability for any loss or damage resulting from reliance on any such information. AF may not be able to verify, does not warrant or guarantee, and assumes no liability for anything posted on this website by any other person. AF does not endorse, support or otherwise promote any private or commercial entity or the information, products or services contained on those websites that may be reached through links on our website.

Members of the media are asked to send questions to the public affairs through their normal channels and to refrain from submitting questions here as comments. Reporter questions will not be posted. We recognize that the Web is a 24/7 medium, and your comments are welcome at any time. However, given the need to manage federal resources, moderating and posting of comments will occur during regular business hours Monday through Friday. Comments submitted after hours or on weekends will be read and posted as early as possible; in most cases, this means the next business day.

For the benefit of robust discussion, we ask that comments remain "on-topic." This means that comments will be posted only as it relates to the topic that is being discussed within the blog post. The views expressed on the site by non-federal commentators do not necessarily reflect the official views of the AF or the Federal Government.

To protect your own privacy and the privacy of others, please do not include personally identifiable information, such as name, Social Security number, DoD ID number, OSI Case number, phone numbers or email addresses in the body of your comment. If you do voluntarily include personally identifiable information in your comment, such as your name, that comment may or may not be posted on the page. If your comment is posted, your name will not be redacted or removed. In no circumstances will comments be posted that contain Social Security numbers, DoD ID numbers, OSI case numbers, addresses, email address or phone numbers. The default for the posting of comments is "anonymous", but if you opt not to, any information, including your login name, may be displayed on our site.

Thank you for taking the time to read this comment policy. We encourage your participation in our discussion and look forward to an active exchange of ideas.