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Summer Reading Program

Sharon Rawlins, Youth Services Specialist for Lifelong Learning, srawlins@njstatelib.org, 609-278-2640 ext. 116

Statewide Summer Reading Program

2015 Summer Reading Program Statistics:

Total books read   – all ages1,767,373
Total registration –  all ages 139,678
Total participants – all ages 149,667
Total programs  – all ages  30,542
Total program attendance – all ages 623,896

(All ages = children, teens, adults)

2016 Theme is “Sports/Fitness/Wellness”Chld Runners Boy copy

  • Children’s & Early Literacy Slogan – “On Your Mark, Get Set…READ!” – Artwork by Matt Tavares, author-illustrator of Zachary’s Ball, Henry Aaron’s Dream, Mudball, Oliver’s Game and the illustrator of The Gingerbread Pirates, ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas, Jack and the Beanstalk, Iron Hans: A Grimms’ Fairy Tale and Lady Liberty: A Biography.
  • Teen Slogan – “Get in the Game – READ”
  • Adult Slogan – “Exercise Your Mind. READ!” – Artwork by  illustrator Larry Jones, whose clients include Random House, Forbes, Harcourt Brace, National Geographic and Scholastic.

Collaborative Summer Library Program (CSLP) Launches the 2016 Teen Video Challenge!

NJ is participating in the 2016 Teen Video Challenge (2016 TVC), a CSLP sponsored national video competition for teens to create videos that promote reading, libraries, and the 2016 CSLP teen summer reading slogan, “Get in the Game -Read.” Teens across the country are invited to create a 30 to 90 second video with their unique interpretation of the 2016 teen slogan Get in the Game -Read  in combination with reading and libraries. Teens are encouraged, before and during the summer months, to be a part of the summer reading process by showcasing their creativity and sharing their ideas before a national audience.

The winning video from each state that participates will be named one of the CSLP 2016 Teen Videos to promote summer reading nationwide. $150 will be awarded to the creator or creative team of the winning state video and their associated public library will receive a gift certificate for prizes worth at least $50 from CSLP, Upstart and CSLP partners. The winners will be announced by CSLP in April 2016. For full details about the CSLP 2016 Teen Video Challenge and to find out how to enter, see the attached documents below or visit CSLP.

Your teens can join  14-year-old Meghan Tandon from Bridgewater Library, a branch of the Somerset County Library System, who was the 2015 video winner from NJ. View her video on YouTube. Or view last year’s winners from other states by visiting the Teen Video Challenge  on CSLP’s website.

CSLP is a consortium of public libraries and state library agencies throughout the United States, its territories, and the Cayman Islands, who are working together, sharing ideas, expertise, and costs to produce a high-quality summer reading program for children, teens, and adults.

2017 Theme and Slogan is “Build a Better World” for all age groups

2018 Theme is Music


New Jersey is a member of the Collaborative Summer Library Program (CSLP).  All fifty states, including the District of Columbia, American Samoa, the Mariana Islands, the Federated Islands of Micronesia, and the Cayman Islands are members of CSLP.  The CSLP website allows staff from all New Jersey public libraries to access the special features,  online order form and other materials on the site, but to access them, you must register first. Any public library staff member is eligible to use the registration system to access the resources found on this members-only website.

The New Jersey Summer Reading Program, coordinated by the New Jersey Statewide Summer Reading Committee through the NJ Library Association, with funding from the New Jersey State Library, encourages everyone of all ages to read for fun during the summer.  The NJ Summer Reading Program website maintains a directory of performers; programming ideas for children, teens and adults; information about discounts for summer reading prizes; registration information for summer reading workshops; and a survey link for statistics from your program. The website is restricted to NJ public librarians or staff and you must first register to access the website. However, there are resources under the Educators Tab that can be accessed without having to register to access the website.

The NJ Summer Reading Program is also on  Facebook.


Manual, Incentives, Clip Art, Reproducible Forms

All public libraries receive one free children’s, teen and adult manual with  accompanying DVDs and a print catalog with an order form for summer reading materials from the Upstart/Highsmith, the contracted vendor for CSLP. Public libraries participating in the Summer Reading Program will receive a children’s banner, a children’s, teen, and adult poster and children’s, teen, and adult bookmarks for free courtesy of the NJ Summer Reading Program.

Clip art is available in color and black and white on DVDs included in the manual. Clip art is also available in the manual in black and white for photocopying. There are also reproducible forms and handouts included on the DVD.

You can also create your own supplementary materials if you prefer and adapt the program to your community’s needs by using the materials, clip art, and digital art that come with the manual and the accompanying DVD. There are rules for use of the artwork, so please respect these and general copyright laws.

Adult Summer Reading Program

The CSLP offers an adult summer reading program. The NJ Summer Reading Program does include a printed adult summer reading manual which was sent to all public libraries. You can order materials for this program directly from Upstart.

Early Literacy Summer Reading Manual and Other Downloadable Materials

The CSLP also offers an early literacy summer reading manual. The manual is included in the packet of manuals that was sent to all public libraries. You can also find downloadable children’s signing videos, slogans in Spanish and PSAs for the summer reading programs on the Downloads page.


If you participate in the summer reading program, the New Jersey Statewide Summer Reading Committee would like to have some feedback. A link to a survey will be posted on the NJ Summer Reading website at the end of summer. Be sure that you keep statistics of the number of participants, programs offered and the attendance, and number of books read during the summer reading program so that you will be prepared to report back. This report will be due in October of each year.

Advocating for the Summer Reading Program

You may also want to check these resources if you want to explain why your summer reading program needs community financial support: CSLP’s Summer Reading Research Page.

Promoting Your Program

To hear and download radio public service announcements for the current year’s summer reading programs for children and teens, visit the CSLP web page, where these are posted in the spring for easy downloading. (If your community doesn’t have a local radio station, perhaps your school would play them on the morning announcements).

Also available at this site are video spots and tips about how to use these announcements to promote your library’s programs. If you have a library website, you might want to run these on your web page. Other tips for publicizing your summer reading program for maximum participation are available in this years manual.

For More Information

Questions should be addressed to the NJ Summer Reading Program Chair Natalie Cheetham at njlasummerreading@gmail.com or the Project Coordinator/State Representative, Sharon Rawlins, srawlins@njstatelib.org.

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