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Boys & Girls Club hosts summer programs

Karen Houser
Special to the Tribune
Provided to the TribuneTahoe Daily Tribune Publisher Kimberly Kuntz reads to children at the Boys & Girls Club.
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The Boys & Girls Club is on a quest this summer to ensure that our kids do not experience learning loss.

Research spanning 100 years shows that most students lose about two months of grade-level equivalency during the summer (Cooper, 1996). Nationally, more than half of the achievement gap between lower- and higher-income students can be explained by unequal access to summer learning opportunities. As a result, low-income youth are less likely to graduate from high school or enter college (Alexander et al, 2007).

Children lose more than academic knowledge over the summer. Most children, particularly children at high risk of obesity, gain weight more rapidly when they are out of school during summer break (Von Hippel et al, 2007).

The Boys & Girls Club is joining hundreds of other communities across the state to change these patterns. We offer programs that are fun with a purpose. Programs that help our kids practice what they have learned in school through fun and engaging activities that include language arts, critical thinking, math, science, technology and geography. We participated in celebrating the National Summer Learning Day on June 21.

Our WORDS “World Of Reading During Summer” is an example of a program that keeps our members involved in language arts.

“The look of anticipation in the kids’ eyes when we sit to choose books each week is so rewarding and as we read together, they hang onto every word with such excitement,” said Tahoe Daily Tribune Publisher Kimberly Kuntz, who comes every Tuesday to read to a group of K-second graders. “It’s truly the highlight of my day.”

To address the issue of keeping our kids active during the summer: that is never a problem at the Boys & Girls Club. Swimming, bike club, skateboard club, paddleboard club, hiking, Jr. Giants Baseball – just about anything you can think of, we make happen for the kids at the club.

To find out more about the Boys & Girls Club or how you can become a volunteer or mentor, visit http://www.bgclt.org.

– Karen Houser is the executive director of the Boys & Girls Club of Lake Tahoe.


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