Another engaging summer planned for CLSC Young Readers

Yemi FalodunStaff Writer

It’s time to crack open a book, turn a page and witness a refreshing dawn for the 2012 CLSC Young Readers program.

Young Readers, entering its 19th year, is under the new leadership of Teresa Adams, assistant director of the Department of Education and Youth Services and director of Special Studies. The program is designed for children ages 10-14.

“We want to give them the overall experience of the characters in the book,” she said.

Calendar of Events
Week One, June 27
The Fingertips of Duncan Dorfman
By Meg Wolitzer
4:15 p.m., Alumni Hall, Garden Room

Week Two, July 3
Ninth Ward
By Jewell Parker Rhodes
4:15 p.m., Alumni Hall, Garden Room

Week Three, July 11
Reflections of a Peacemaker
By Mattie J.T. Stepanek
4:15 p.m., Alumni Hall, Garden Room

Week Four, July 18
A Long Walk to Water
By Linda Sue Park
4:15 p.m., Alumni Hall, Ballroom

Week Five, July 25
The Wise Fool
By Shahrukh Husain and Micha Archer (Illustrator)
4:15 p.m., Alumni Hall, Garden Room

Week Six, August 1
By Brian Selznick
4:15 p.m., Alumni Hall, Garden Room

Week Seven, August 8
Okay for Now
By Gary Schmidt
4:15 p.m., Alumni Hall, Ballroom

Week Eight, August 15
To Kill a Mockingbird
By Harper Lee
4:15 p.m., Alumni Hall, Garden Room

Week Nine, August 22
The Greatest Presidential Stories Never Told
By Rick Beyer
4:15 p.m., Alumni Hall, Ballroom

Adams replaces Jack Voelker, who served as the program’s director since its inception in 1994.

“I have always enjoyed reading the Young Readers books far more than most of the adult books that someone might suggest to me,” said Voelker about the annual program that starts 4:15 p.m. Wednesday in the Alumni Hall Garden Room. “And I still do even if I’m not choosing them anymore.”

This year’s nine selections include two nonfiction tales, six fiction books and an inspirational book of poetry.

On Wednesday, author Meg Wolitzer will visit the Young Readers to discuss her book The Fingertips of Duncan Dorfman, which follows a young Scrabble player who has an unusual gift.

For Week Three, Reflections of a Peacemaker details the life of late 13-year-old poet Mattie J.T. Stepanek and his struggle with a rare form of muscular dystrophy.

In Week Eight, Pulitzer Prize-winning novel To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee, is this year’s “classic” book.

The books were chosen several months in advance from a pool of 171 suggestions.

“People stop me along the way, saying ‘Have you thought of this?’” said Sherra Babcock, director of the Department of Education. “In the fall, we like to sit down and ask, ‘What will make for a well-rounded season?’”

In addition to the nine books, Young Readers is implementing a 15-minute discussion before each weekly meeting, followed by a creative outlet that allows the readers the chance to experience their books in a real-world setting.

“In the A Long Walk for Water week, they will carry water like people in African villages,” said Adams.

The CLSC Young Readers Medallion Award, given by the Veranda staff, will reward young readers who read 16 books from the Young Readers historic book list of over 150 titles, including Jeffrey Simpson’s book, Chautauqua: An American Utopia.