Darlington County School District Bookmobile revs up summer reading

By Samantha Lyles, slyles@newsandpress.net

The Darlington County School District and the TEACH Foundation are teaming up to keep student’s summer reading habits in high gear by hitting the Hartsville streets in the Bookmobile, an activity bus loaded with fun and educational books to suit every young reader.

“There’s a huge variety, from fiction to non-fiction, on all sorts of levels. Anything that they would want to read about, it’s probably in there,” says Bookmobile volunteer Stacey Bannister, who taught second grade for 16 years at Washington Street Elementary and now teaches at North Hartsville Elementary.

Kids are encouraged to take out a new book – free of charge – each week and return the ones they borrowed and read the previous week, ensuring they always have fresh new stories to explore. But if they take a book home and grow attached to the story, they can keep it for a while and re-read it to their heart’s content. Bannister says many of the Bookmobile selections are suitable for kids enrolled in the Accelerated Reader program.

But the Bookmobile’s mission is more than entertainment; by keeping kids engaged with new books during the summer vacation, their reading skills remain sharp and they’ll have a much easier time with the new demands of their schoolwork in the fall.

“We’re trying to prevent the summer reading slump so that when students return to school they are ready for their next grade and they have read all summer…it affects them tremendously when they are playing catch-up the entire first few months of school,” says Bannister. “It’s just amazing how not reading every day over the summer will create that huge problem. We are encouraging reading so that when students return, they are ready.”

For parents who are having difficulty getting their kids to crack open a book, Bannister advises stopping by the Bookmobile or the library and choosing books that appeal to each child’s unique interests.

“Come check out the Bookmobile because we have a wide variety to choose from…and don’t just pick out things that you want them to read, but find things that they want to read about,” says Bannister.

Be sure to stop by the Bookmobile on Tuesday and Thursday mornings this summer at one of these convenient locations in Hartsville:

Tuesdays: Old Food Lion (beside Burger King from 8:15 to 8:45, Pride Park from 9 to 9:30, Byerly Park (playground side) from 9:45 to 10:15, Lawton Park from 10:20 to 10:55, and Centennial Park from 11 to 11:45.
Thursdays: Thornwell School from 8:15 to 8:45, Washington Street Elementary from 9 to 9:30, West Hartsville Elementary from 9:45 to 10:15, Lee Street (Leesburg / Carolina) from 10:20 to 10:55, and Oakdale (Logan / Mill Avenue) from 11 to 11:45.

Author: mrollins

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