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Jemison library hosting summer Journey Through Jemison

By STEVEN CALHOUN/Staff Writer

The Jemison Public Library will give students the chance to learn through fun activities during its Journey Through Jemison program this summer. The reading hour will meet on Wednesdays from 10-11 a.m. starting on June 7.

The program is an extension of the reading hour librarian Tammie McGriff hosts throughout the year. McGriff has held reading hours during the summer for five years.

“The children love it … I just do it for fun for the children. It’s hard to find fun things for kids that are free,” McGriff said. “A lot of times, people will come to me and ask if they can come [read], and they love it.”

This summer, students will have the opportunity to hear from representatives of local businesses. The guest readers each will read a book related to their career and share their knowledge with the students.

One goal of the program is to enrich students’ learning and provide new experiences. McGriff hopes the group will get to visit places in Jemison to learn firsthand about what they have read. She has already planned for the students to visit a bank vault, and said Piggly Wiggly usually brings unusual fruits and vegetables to help teach the students.

These enriching experiences help make reading fun for students and the routine gets them accustomed to stopping by the library.

“It’s to keep them reading through the summer. When they come to that, then they’ll come in here and check out books,” McGriff said. “It helps. During the school year, they have to read certain things, but in the summer they can read whatever they want to.”

McGriff said the older students are able to learn about possible career paths. Younger students can learn not to be afraid of going to the doctor by meeting a doctor outside of the office and seeing them in a relaxed environment, according to McGriff.

“When they see her here, just like a regular person, it makes a difference. Then when they go to her as a patient, they aren’t scared,” McGriff said. “I’ve seen how it can make a big difference in the kids.”

McGriff thanked the mayor and city council for supporting the program and allowing her to leave when necessary to escort the students.

The meeting places of some of the readings have yet to be determined. The June meetings are slated to begin in the library. Notifications will be posted of special cases.