A Universe of Stories
Encouraging kids in Cascade to get move involved with reading
Kassia Cummings grew up in Cascade, ID, and has gone to the same school her whole life. Ever since she was a kid, reading has been a very important aspect of her life. In elementary school, her teachers and the different reading programs that were offered encouraged her to read harder books more and more often as she grew older. During her high school years, she reflected on what made reading so important to her and wanted the younger generation of kids to feel the same way about reading that she felt when she was their age. In order to do this, she created the 2019 Cascade Summer Reading Program to encourage kids in Cascade to get more involved with reading.
Implementation of Project
To implement her project, Kassia started by talking with the Cascade Public Library about her project to bring back the Summer Reading Program. The librarians were fully on board with the idea, so she started by setting up dates of when each session would happen throughout the summer. Once that was done, she handed out flyers and posted them on different boards throughout the small town of Cascade.
“Starting programs up like this can be very difficult, but once it’s all said and done, you just have to take a step back to see how rewarding all of that work really was.” – Kassia Cummings
One important task was getting the help she needed to run the program. She already had the librarians to help her with the project, but she needed one other person to be co-running the program. So, she turned to her best friend, Rowan Huskey, to be her right-hand-man throughout the project.
Results of Project
Overall, the program saw seven sessions happen over the 2019 summer from June 6th to August 1st. Some were more successful than others, but Kassia found all of them equally rewarding. The attendance ranged from no kids at one of the sessions to nine at another.
“I’ll admit, it was a bit disheartening when I didn’t see the program go exactly as I envisioned, but seeing the kids that did show up have fun was what mattered more. I’d rather have a few smiling faces than a million unhappy ones.” – Kassia Cummings
While this project has been Kassia’s CLP, she decided to double this project as her Senior Project, which will help her get the credit she needs to graduate. When finishing up the reading program, Kassia and the Library definitely saw this program as successful, with the improvements needed noted down for future programs the Library might sponsor.
Kassia will graduate from Cascade Jr-Sr High School in May of 2020 and will be attending Boise State University in the fall. She hopes to major in something art-related and finish college with a bachelor’s degree. While her dream job is to work for Pixar Animation Studios as a Storyboard Artist, she also has her eyes set on becoming a graphic designer if that goal doesn’t pan out. She is hopeful someone will be able to take on the Summer Reading Program for the 2020 summer and that it will be as rewarding to them as she found it.