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Jackson County Memorial Library

Summer Reading FAQs

What is the Summer Reading Program? 
The JCML Summer Reading Program (SRP) is our annual program designed to keep kids - and adults - interested in reading during the summer months to help them maintain their reading skills until school begins. We have weekly book drawings for participants and hold programs on Fridays in the Services Building Auditorium. For the 2024 program, "Adventure Begins at Your Library," we have scheduled dinosaur expert BK Bones, magician John O'Bryant, STEM-based performance group Talewise, and the Texas Snake Man. We will also have food activities and financial literacy activities. Finally, we'll have a Summer Reading Wrap-Up with games, crafts, and prizes to celebrate everyone's hard work this summer. Beginning May 28th, you can come by the library to register and download the Reader Zone app, and start logging your books! See our Summer Reading page for all the dates and info!

Why should I sign up my child or myself? 
Reading is an important skill that we use our entire lives! Starting a child reading at an early age helps foster a love of books, something that stays with us as we grow older. Our SRP not only encourages reading but helps to make it fun and exciting so everyone wants to keep reading. This year, we are offering prizes when participants reach a certain page goal based on their age, which also acts as an incentive to keep reading!

What are the page goals? What does that mean? 
For 2024, we are again asking each participant to reach a "pages read" goal, and each reader who completes their goal will receive a prize. We hope by doing this, each reader will feel a sense of accomplishment and pride at reaching a goal instead of feeling discouraged if they don't win a competition. However, we do hope you keep reading even after you meet your goal! This year, we've changed the reading groups; they are no longer age-based but goal-based instead.  You're free to choose which group/goal you would like to join and we've broken down each goal with about how many books it will take to reach it to give you a better idea of which goal you feel will be attainable for you or your reader. The reading groups and their page goals for each age group are:
-Casual Reader: 850 pages 
----This is about 4 picture books per week, about 6-150 page JF chapter books all summer, or about 4 YA/F books all summer.
-Devoted Reader: 1250 pages
----This is about 6 picture books per week, about 9-150 page JF chapter books all summer, or about 5 YA/F books all summer.
-Extreme Reader: 2000 pages 
----This is about 10 picture books per week, about 14-150 page JF chapter books all summer, or about 8 YA/F books all summer.
-Voracious Reader: 4000 pages 
----This is about 20 picture books per week, about 14-150 page JF chapter books all summer, or about 16 YA/F books all summer.

What is Reader Zone? 
Reader Zone is a free app for your smartphone or tablet available for download in the App Store or Google Play that we use to track reading for our SRP. We've used it for several years and everyone seems to like it so we decided to use it again. Once you've registered in the library for the SRP, you will get access to the app to begin tracking pages beginning May 28th. See our Summer Reading page for links to download the app.

Do I have to read library books? 
No. We would love for you to visit the library and check out our books, but books read at daycare or grandparents' or babysitters' house, books checked out from other libraries, books borrowed from our Friends' Little Libraries, books from anywhere can be counted! We just encourage you to read!

What if my child isn't old enough to read on their own? 
You can absolutely read aloud to your child and count those as pages read for the child!

If my child or myself reads a book more than once, can I track those pages? 
No, we ask that you only log each book read once, no matter how many times you read it.

Can I count audiobooks? 
Yes, you can count audiobooks. Since we ask you to log pages read, you can look up the book on Amazon, Goodreads or our card catalog to find the number of pages in the hardcover/paperback version of the book.

Can I count ebooks? 
Yes, you can count ebooks. We do ask that you also log the pages of the hardcover/paperback version (like with audiobooks) since ebook pages can differ from the actual book. 

How long do we have to reach our pages read goal? 
This year, the Summer Reading Program will run for 7 weeks, beginning Tuesday, May 28th, and ending Friday, July 12th, the last day to log books.

What are the prizes for finishing? 
At this time, we are still determining exact prizes, but each participant that completes the reading goal for their age group can come by the library for a prize.

How do I get my prizes? 
Just come by the library once you reach your goal. We will confirm that you finished and you'll be able to select a prize!

How do I enter the grand prize drawings?
This year, we are going to have multiple grand prizes for teens/adults and children participants. It will be up to the participant to decide which prize to put their tickets toward. When you turn in your badge log (reading log for teens/adults) the last week of the program, July 15-19, you'll receive your tickets and can then place them in the bucket for the prize you hope to win!

How can I earn raffle tickets? 
Raffle tickets are earned by collecting badges all summer. Badges can be earned by attending Summer Reading events, library programs, reaching reading goals, or completing outdoor activities or extra reading activities. When you register for the Summer Reading Program, you'll receive a badge log that has spaces for the different badges available to earn this summer. Each badge collected earns 1 ticket; earn every badge for an additional 5 tickets. (For our adult participants, we are asking you to complete a reading log of every book you read. Each book earns 1 ticket; read 5 books and earn an additional 5 tickets.) There are also 5 bonus activities that will earn a prize if you complete them. Collect and keep up with your badges and badge log all summer, then turn them in the last week of the program, July 15-19. You'll receive your tickets to place in the buckets of the prize(s) you hope to win! Badges & tickets will be the responsibility of the participant.

What is the Smokey Bear Challenge?
This year in honor of Smokey Bear's 80th birthday, the USDA Forest Service has created a special reading challenge just for libraries!  As an extra Summer Reading activity, you'll be given a challenge log that will include a reading challenge and activity challenges.  Completing the Smokey Bear challenge log will earn you a scratch-off coupon to win one of several prizes!  This is an extra, optional activity for the 2024 Summer Reading Program.

What are the grand prizes? 
At this time, they are TBD, but we are going to have several to choose from. We will have children-specific prizes and teen/adult-specific prizes. Stay tuned!

I'm not very tech-savvy. Do I have to track pages with the Reader Zone app? 
Unfortunately, yes, this is the only way we are tracking pages this year to award goal prizes and top readers. If you have questions or would like a quick tutorial, please come by the library and any librarian will be happy to help you.

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