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From the Desk of Assemblyman Rob Walker - Summer Reading Challenge Kicks Off

New York State Assemblyman Rob Walker (R, C, I, WF – Hicksville) has once again partnered with the New York State Library and libraries throughout Nassau County to bring the 2009 Summer Reading Challenge to school children.  This program, which encourages children to develop reading habits when they are young, has been shown to decrease learning losses typical during the summer break.

“In my fifth year of participating in this program, I am hoping it will be bigger and better than ever,” said Walker. “We all know that reading is an essential life skill that needs to be cultivated in our children when they are young. By making reading fun, I believe this program encourages both parents and children to get involved, spend time together and enrich their lives.”

The theme for this year’s Summer Reading Challenge is “Be Creative @ Your Library.” This year also marks the 400th anniversary of Henry Hudson exploring New York and the 200th anniversary of Robert Fulton’s steamship the Clermont, both events students are encouraged to learn more about as part of the creative theme. Local public libraries help children participating in the Summer Reading Challenge by assisting them to select reading materials and provide literacy-enhancing programs.

Additionally, Walker will be starting his Read and Run Program in conjunction with the Summer Reading Challenge. The Read and Run Program will encourage kids to read or exercise for half hour per day over a two-month period. Those completing at least 26 days of each will have finished both “marathons” successfully.

“As childhood obesity increases, it is important that children learn proper exercise and healthy habits while young as well as developing proper reading skills,” said Walker. “My Read and Run Program, when combined with the Summer Reading Challenge, should help produce lifelong results and healthy behavioral habits.”

For more information about the Summer Reading Challenge or Assemblyman Walker’s Read and Run Program, call Walker’s district office at 937-3571.