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Local

Newton Public Library summer reading program going virtual

The Newton Public Library has announced that the usual summer reading program will now take place in the virtual world due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Kids will receive Brag Tags when they reach 1,000 points.
The Newton Public Library has announced that the usual summer reading program will now take place in the virtual world due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Kids will receive Brag Tags when they reach 1,000 points.

The Newton Public Library summer reading program is going virtual.

For children ages 3-12, the READSquared app will assist them in logging their points. Upon each level of points children reach, they will receive a Brag Tag, which are fun little book related tags. After reaching 1,000 points, children will receive a book they can keep. Children 0-2 will also be included.

“Ages 0-2 we are doing bubbles and a board book because obviously the Brag Tags won’t work for the babies and toddlers that want to participate,” youth services librarian Phyllis Peter said. “Because of course we count books that parents read to children too so younger children that are not reading on their own can still participate.”

The teen program will operate the same as the younger kid’s program with a couple changes. Once teens have accumulated 1,000 points by either reading for 1,000 minutes or reading 10 teen level books, ebooks or audiobooks worth 100 points each, they too will receive a prize.

“When they complete the program they will get a ticket to the Capitol II Movie Theatre,” Peter said.

Adults can also participate in the virtual summer reading program. To participate, 10 books or digital versions, either audiobooks or ebooks, need to be checked out from the library and logged in using either the READSquared app or with a physical book log. Upon completion, they will get an adult movie ticket to the Capitol II Theatre, while supplies last.

“We are trying to keep participation really easy and convenient this year,” public services librarian Becca Klein said.

Once levels are achieved, families can pick up their Brag Tags through the curbside pickup the library has in place.

“We don’t know yet when we are going to reopen,” Peter said.

The official start date for the program is June 1, and will run through July 31. The app will not go live until the program starts. While summer reading may look a bit different this year the hopes are that people will still enjoy the program.

“People of all ages really do look forward to summer reading every year and we hope that they can just enjoy participating in the program again this year even though it is going to look different. It has always been a lot of fun,” Klein said.

Contact Dustin Teays at
641-792-3121 ext. 6533
or dteays@newtondailynews.com

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