WTAJ Originals: Program encourages love of reading

Daily Originals

A Jefferson County library is making sure kids have plenty of books to read.

A library is full of books to borrow…but this table is full of books for kids to keep.

“The Baby Gingerbread Man, it’s kind of like my favorite book,” said Kindergartner McKayla Boyd.

Brockway’s Mengle Memorial Library started a Books in Home Program in 2017.

The program originated as a way to get books in the homes of kids from low-income families…and has since expanded to what it is today.

“We looked at kindergarten kids coming, life-skills kids coming, any kids coming for our program that are able to get a book in their home and read and have fun is important,” said Library Director Darlene Marshall.

Teachers in the Brockway Area School District say this program gets kids excited about reading.

“Especially learning to read at this age, that’s so much fun,” said teacher Katie Fremer. “Like, I had a few in there saying ‘oh, are these the kind that I can read too?’ So they love that.”

Not only does the library inspire kids to love books by picking one to keep, they can check out a book, inspiring a love for the library too.

“They’re building a relationship that the library is good experience, fun, a place to learn and read and get books,” said Marshall.

Whether borrowing or keeping the book…the library hopes the kids become life-long readers.

“My favorite part about reading is you can learn about books and it’s really fun,” said Boyd.

Since the program started, the library has purchased more than 2,000 books to give away.

The program is completely funded by the Frank Varischetti Foundation and the Gray Family Foundation of DuBois.

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