BoB Research Team Joins KCPL for Summer Reading Event!
By Riley McHugh
On Saturday, August 13th the BoB Research Team joined the Kent County Public Library in Chestertown for their annual summer reading celebration! The event is a celebration of the summer long reading challenge promoted by the library that seeks to get people of all ages involved and excited about reading. This year’s theme, “Oceans of Possibilities,” was carried throughout the event and highlighted by the enthusiasm and participation demonstrated by all who were in attendance. After the high levels of participation and great success of achieving and surpassing last year’s goal, the KCPL sought to challenge participants even further, setting the 2022 community reading goal at 750,000 minutes for summer – tripling the reading goal from 2021! The challenge lasted from June 1st through August 13th, included eight weeks’ worth of programs and events for participants to enjoy, and was an exciting opportunity for participants of all ages.
Our team arrived shortly before the celebratory event started to set up our materials. Once we set up our table, it was time to select a mini-survey question for the summer reading participants to answer. After careful consideration of what would be most engaging (and how to organize the layout of our poster) we settled on asking “What was your favorite book you read this summer?” The answers did not disappoint – we received a range of answers covering all sorts of interests and book styles, and kids were very excited to share their favorite books with us, so much so that many were struggling to pick only one book to share!
The opportunity to interact with members of the Chestertown community and share information with them about our project while also learning what it means for them was the highlight of the day. Community members of all ages and backgrounds were excited to learn more, and were equally as excited to share with us what reading and literacy means to them. The connections we made and stories that were shared increased our team’s already soaring excitement for the project, especially as the days of data analysis are approaching.
Another memorable feature of the day was getting to see the updates Robbi and Matthew made to the bus as they were preparing for the start of the tour. Our team got to look around inside the bus and were thoroughly impressed by the transformation of an ordinary school bus into a creatively organized mobile home. As the summer readers interacted with the bus throughout the event, it was clear that the tangible representation of our project allowed interest to grow and the magnitude of this project to become clear. By the end of the event, everyone’s excitement had grown, and our team was looking forward to similar community events in the future!