Catch Yourself Between the Pages of a Book!

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Happy May! As many of you know, we are quickly approaching our annual Summer Reading Program (Yay! Get hyped!). To get us ready for two months of fun reading activities and friendly competition, why not participate in May’s “Get Caught Reading Month” celebration? The idea is to encourage reading, bring awareness to the many benefits of reading, and to indulge literature by getting lost between a book's pages. So really, it’s like a pre-summer reading program.

Over the years, researchers have recorded a decline in reading and reading habits.  According to an article posted by the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, “The percentage of American adults who read at least one book for pleasure in the previous year fell to the lowest level on record in 2017 (below 53%). The greatest decline in book-reading rates occurred among adults under the age of 55”. And it isn’t just adults that are experiencing this decline in reading, but children and teens as well. According to the National Children’s Book and Literacy Alliance, the number of  9-13 year-olds who regularly read for fun “[has] dropped from nearly a decade ago and are at the lowest levels since at least the mid-1980s”. And while some of these findings are concerning, we understand that there are many different reasons why this could be. 

What are some of the positives of reading? Though I have always been a fan of all things bookish, I know that it can be hard for people to get into reading. So what are some of the benefits

  1. Reading reduces stress by up to 68%. Now that is something I can get behind!
  2. With a decrease in stress comes an increase in sleep. Studies show that reading routinely before bedtime helps improve sleep.
  3. Reading increases memory and boosts analytical skills. 
  4. Speed reading helps eyesight.
  5. Reading can boost vocabulary learning by up to 12,000 words a year. 
  6. Reading helps increase empathy towards others...sometimes as much as 83%. Empathy can be helpful in day-to-day and personal relationships. It can also be instrumental in the workforce.

Currently sponsored by Every Child a Reader, the Get Caught Reading Campaign was started in 1999 by the Association of American Publishers. The campaign takes place all year long, while Get Caught Reading Month focuses on May. The goal is to get people excited about reading and, through reading, become knowledgeable individuals who can change the world and make it a better place. These are ideas and goals that I think all of us can and want to get behind. And with all of the included benefits, it's hard not to at least want to experiment with reading, right?

So, want to find ways to be a part of this movement? The library is a great place to begin your reading journey! Though books, reading, and literacy are a big part of our daily life, we want this to be an experience you can enjoy. Here are some fun ways to get you started: 

  1. Take & share a selfie of you and/or your most recent read. You can either keep it to yourself, send it to a friend (challenge them to get in on the reading action!), or share it to your social media with the tag #getcaughtreading.
  2. Grab a reading buddy. Many of my friends and I find that we read more/get more out of our reading experience when we share it with others. Sometimes this means setting time aside to hang out while you read different books and sometimes reading the same book together and going over it afterward. Either way, what fun!
  3. Book swap! Swap your favorite stories with a friend, family member, or neighbor. I love recommending my favorite titles to others and I always feel touched and excited when I learn that they actually read them. 
  4. Visit the library: The library has a wide variety of books and services available to you. Why not stop by and see who you can catch reading there? And while you are there, check out some of the fun activities that are going on! Like the Book Bingo cards being featured in the Adult Services department. 


Don’t know what to read? Never fear! Here is a list of some of my favorite books. If you love them, let me know! I love hearing from you.




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