Submitted by Barbara Hambek, Edgewood Community Library
The Edgewood Community Library beat its previous records in reading hours (1008!), registrations (196), and attendance at all of our Summer Reading Program (SRP) events (with an average of 80 people at each event)! The activities were planned so they would be easy enough for the small children, and fun enough to pull in older children as well. The activities planned brought in the crowds: children, parents, grandparents, and others!
The event with the highest attendance was the week of chemistry, with lemonade in-a-bag and ice cream in-a-bag. The best moment that day was watching the faces of the children as they got to eat the ice cream they had just made for themselves in their own baggies! The next week their grandma said they had gone home and tried all kinds of other fruit to make “juice-in-a-bag!”
Another fun day was our kick-off event, grafting tomato plants. We have a wonderful benefactor whose family owns and runs a massive greenhouse in Wichita Ks. He always brings the plants, seeds, soil, and anything necessary for the event, and speaks with the children about growing plants, whether vegetables for harvesting and eating, or flowers and ornamentals for enjoying. The parents and children were very intent on their grafting project, all excited at creating a new tomato they could grow at home, and eat at their table. At the beginning of the next week’s event, one mom told us her husband took their tomato plants and reinforced the grafting to ensure they would grow for them. Even the parents at home enjoyed helping with projects their children learned about and brought home!
Another fun day was energy, where they made rubber band cars. The fast-food drink cups were donated by a local fast-food restaurant, and the children were having races in the hallway with their finished cups to see whose would run the fastest. The parents were overjoyed to see their children playing and learning.
There was also a lot of fun on the day where sound was explored. There were tuning forks, home-made kazoos (out of straws), and boom-whackers to name a few. Some parents felt the noise was a bit high that day (and it was!), but again enjoyed learning with their children as they played with the different types of instruments that make sound.
It is these types of responses that make all the work of the SRP so worthwhile for our library!