Children of Ottawa, get your summer read on!


by Véronique Dupuis

If you were a fly on the wall at the Sunnyside Library this month, you would see Caitlin, a library worker, going through a supply closet in search of the perfect materials to use for crafts. You would also see her colleague Luna at her desk, browsing the Internet in search of fun science experiments to do with children, and me perched on a chair hanging decorations in the Children’s department.

We are preparing for the most exciting time of the year at the library (according to children’s librarians): summer! Every year, more than 2,000 Canadian libraries participate in the TD Summer Reading Club. Its objective is to get kids excited about reading throughout the hot season and retain the skills they gained during the school year.

The TD Summer Reading Club is really three things rolled into one.

First, it is a way to encourage children to read every day. We give them a kit which includes a notebook, stickers, reading recommendations, an origami activity and, most importantly, a calendar on which to mark every day that they have spent reading. Throughout the summer, they can report back to us, and we’ll give them a reward for their efforts. They could also win a free book of their choice from a large selection through our weekly draw.

Second, they can participate in fun (and free) activities! Science experiments, encounters with animals, crafting, playing with a Cubetto robot, movie nights – we hope that many of you will come spend a bit of your day with us for those activities!

Third, the national website of the TD Summer Reading Club is a good way to pass the time on rainy days (or on a long drive, using a phone). Children are invited to vote in an all-Canadian Battle of the Books, answer trivia questions, read jokes submit there own, read an exclusive web comic, all of this in English and French.


Véronique Dupuis is a librarian in the Children and Teen Services area at the Sunnyside Branch of the Ottawa Public Library.


Dates to remember:


June 12: The library (all 33 branches in our system) starts giving out book club kits.

June 12: Registration begins for our summer activities (although some programs are drop-ins). Visit the Ottawa Public Library’s website or talk to us for more information.

June 19, from 3:30 to 5 p.m.: Summer Reading Club launch party at the Sunnyside library! Come one, come all, to get your book club kit, participate in activities and have a snack!

July 3: Start of our summer programming. Yippee! See you there!

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