Free Summer Reading Camp for Kids

POTTSVILLE, Pa. -- Throughout this week, young students in Schuylkill County will be attending a summer reading camp in Pottsville, and they're able to learn free of charge.

School may be out of session, but that hasn't kept some youngsters from taking a week out of their summers to learn.

"Most children don't read as much today as they used to. There are so many other distractions as far as devices and media that they really are not readers, and that really reflects on their scores on their achievement tests, the PSSAs," said Barbara Tokarz, camp coordinator.

For the second year, thanks to a community-wide effort to assist the youth, Trinity Episcopal Church in Pottsville is hosting a summer reading camp for kids in Schuylkill County to teach and instill important values and skills that'll help these kids succeed in the classroom.

"There are many issues we're trying to cover in the camp, mainly reading, language activities, math. We did some artwork this morning. Also, friendship and sharing and social skills," said Susan Noble, a retired teacher.

There are about 30 campers from all around Schuylkill County, and most importantly, they're able to come and get an education free of charge thanks to a collection of grants.

"It makes my brain feel good. That's all," said camper Isabella Walchak.

"Reading is a skill that if the children don't acquire, it's going to give them problems for the rest of their school years, and they'll fall behind. When children start to fall behind, that opens up a whole other range of consequences. They're more likely to drop out of school. They're more likely to be a discipline problem," Tokarz explained.

The hope is that by attending this camp, kids will be steered in the right direction.

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