Summer Learning Grants are available to Ready.Set.READ! (RSR) partner schools, Summer Learning Coalition members and other organizations serving Berks County Title 1 students and were awarded through a competitive process based on a review by a panel of community volunteers, including Ready.Set.READ! and United Way of Berks County board and committee members. The Ready.Set.READ! initiative is managed by United Way of Berks County.
2021 Summer Learning Grants totaling $50,000 were awarded to 10 local organizations. Each grant supports summer learning programming featuring a literacy component and serving Berks County Title 1 students, PreK and up to and including 3rd grade:
- 10th & Penn Elementary School: Feel Good Gardening program is focusing on literacy through the theme of creating a garden and includes Social Emotional Learning (SEL) and gardening math. Each week will feature a different focus and will start with planning of a garden, to growing crops, and culminate with a student-written cookbook of our 10th and Penn family favorites.
- Berks Area Youth Recreation Inc.: the Summer Reading Ranger program will introduce students to the library. The program will include an introduction to the library with frequent visits, assistance selecting best-fit books, and being a part of the library?s virtual reading program. At BAYR base camp activities will include literacy learning and fun.
- Daniel Boone Area Primary Center: the Summer Academic Connections Academy provides an opportunity for students to work on literacy skills in a fun and exciting way. During this program, the children will play literacy games, read, write, and talk about literacy. The creativity and collaborations abound as the teacher's create exciting and engaging activities.
- Millmont Elementary School: Ready, Set, Seed is a STEAM program to learn about gardening, seeds, and plants. Throughout the entire program the team will be rebuilding the school?s garden. The literacy learning will include nonfiction book reading, activities, and vocab focus to support the project.
- Mt. Penn Primary Center: Swim into Kindergarten will work with incoming Kindergartners for school readiness. Focus includes name recognition, letter identification, read alouds to build vocab, and fine motor coordination skills. The last day includes an hour parental engagement and informational session.
- Olivet Boys & Girls Club: the Summer Reading Program will utilize a reading enrichment program to create the foundation for fun group readings, discussions, and activities to bring the story to life and enhance comprehension.
- Reading Public Library: summerSTEAM@RPL is a partnership program with the Reading Recreation Commission for hands-on and messy learning programming - from making slime to planting seeds, children will explore STEAM in a tactile way. Vocabulary, comprehension, listening, and writing skills will be the focus throughout each session as the students follow directions, discuss processes and results and write the ?lab sheet. ?STEAM Go Packs? will also be distributed to children not able to attend in-person programming.
- Schuylkill Valley Elementary School: Summer School will focus on small group instruction for reading, writing, and math. The ?Around the World? summer learning theme will use fiction and non-fiction books to develop phonics, vocabulary, language comprehension, and practicing writing skills.
- Teachers in the Parks: summer program meets kids where they are - parks, pools, and rec center. The tactile outside learning is a nice change from the classroom setting where students work with a teacher in small groups for reading and math enrichment. The grade-level literacy activities include read-alouds, independent reading, writing, and foundation skills as needed. Teachers use their creativity to actively engage students in their surroundings with various projects, games, and activities.
- Willow Creek Elementary School: the Fleetwood Tigers Summer Learning program is focused on students who have been identified with reading deficits. The whole group, small group, and 1:1 instruction, aligning with the school?s Reading program, will creatively use engaging themes to increase literacy skills. In addition to the math and literacy activities, the students will receive a healthy snack and have recess time. Transportation is included to increase participation.
2020 Summer Learning Grants totaling nearly $47,000 were awarded to 11 local organizations. Each grant supports summer learning programming featuring a literacy component and serving Berks County Title 1 students, PreK and up to and including 3rd grade:
- Berks Area Youth Recreation Incorporated: Summer camp participants will enjoy outdoor activities with the goals of fun, friends and environmental learning, all aligned with a fun method of reading and comprehension to keep and enhance the child's reading skills to prepare for this year's academic challenges.
- Brandywine Heights Area School District: Students will participate in a virtual reading program that will keep the students engaged in fun activities, while embedding basic foundational reading skills/practice.
- Clay on Main: Alphabet Acrobats will provide kits to families with activities for preschool children to support pre-reading skills.
- Daniel Boone Area School District: Daniel Boone will run a four-week, district-wide virtual summer program focusing on English Language Arts and Math.
- Governor Mifflin School District: The Kindergarten Countdown program will give students an opportunity to explore an early learning environment with an academic emphasis on developing literacy skills.
- Muhlenberg School District: Muhlenberg Elementary School will use a virtual learning plateform, Class Dojo, to post videos of guest readers reading books to their students and demonstrating fun academic videos like practicing sight words with sidewalk chalk.
- Reading Public Library: The Reading Public Library Mobile Tech vans will deliver quality outreach services and programming to community centers located within the city of Reading to meet out-of-school youth.
- Millmont Elementary School: The Ready, Set, Watch us Grow with Reading program will be a virtual learning experience enhanced with books about planting, the growing process, theme-related story books, and packets of seeds for planting.
- Amanda E. Stout Elementary School: The How to Become a YouTuber: Becoming a Digital Citizen program will teach students how to become responsible digital users by creating and publishing their own ideas through the use of videos.
- Glenside Elementary: The virtual online Summer Camp Academy will be themed around rhyme time and focus on nursery rhymes.
- YMCA of Reading & Berks County: Students will be assigned three or more books each week per child for ten weeks, which they will have to complete along with a short quiz and other virtual reading activities.
2019 Summer Learning Grants totaling more than $54,400 were awarded to 12 local orgnizations. Each grant supports summer learning programming featuring a literacy component and serving Berks County Title 1 students, PreK and up to and including 3rd grade:
- 10th & Penn Elementary: Students will participate in a variety of literacy, arts and STEAM activities.
- Amanda E. Stout Elementary School: STEAM Summer Camp will engage students to retain an academic mindset over the summer, focusing on literacy and critical thinking, as well as incorporate weekly nutrition lessons.
- Berks County Intermediate Unit: Childcare programs will feature STEM kits during the summer months.
- Brandywine Heights Area School District: The district's elementary school's summer book club will feature core literacy components to enhance fluency and comprehension for students.
- Daniel Boone Area Primary Center: Teachers in the Park will support summer learning through its "Literacy Leaders" program and embed literacy and learning activities where children play.
- Governor Mifflin School District: Students will explore an early learning environment, with a focus on developing literacy skills, in the district's "Kindergarten Countdown" program.
- Lauer's Park Elementary: A school and family STEM program includes modeled read alouds, field trips and promoting family, home-based literacy activities.
- Muhlenberg Elementary Center: Literacy activities will be coordinated with the district's summer food program.
- Olivet Boys & Girls Club: The Pollinator Garden Project will add literacy and learning activities while children learn about the plant and pollination process.
- Reading Public Library: The library's "Summer STEAM @ RPL" will support programs centered on a mobile technology van delivering programming to "book deserts", or areas within the city located outside of walking distance to any library branch.
- YMCA of Reading & Berks County: Children will participate in reading and STEAM activities designed to evoke creativity and problem-solving skills.
- Yocum Institute of Arts Education: Its Summer Arts Connection Camps provides scholarships for students to participate in literacy/arts experiences, including plays, art projects and dance.
2018 Summer Learning Grants totaling more than $37,000 were awarded to eight local organizations to support summer programming featuring a literacy component and serving Berks County Title 1 students, up to and including 3rd grade:
- Antietam School District: Teachers in the Park at the Antietam Playground will provide instruction to students in a setting where kids want to be in the summer.
- Brandywine Heights Area School District: The district's elementary school's summer book club will feature core literacy components to enhance fluency and comprehension for students in K-3.
- Governor Mifflin School District: Students will explore an early learning environment, with a focus on developing literacy skills, in the district's "Kindergarten Countdown" program. Priority will be given to students on the district's Pre-K Counts waiting list.
- Olivet Boys & Girls Club: The Caterpillar Butterfly Summer Literacy Project will add literacy and STEAM related activities to the organization's summer camp experience for children up to and including 3rd grade.
- Opportunity House: Pre school and early elementary students will advance their literacy and critical thinking skills through a special "Gardening Across the Curriculum" program.
- Reading Public Library: The library's "Summer STEAM @ RPL" will support programs centered on a new mobile technology van recently acquired by the library to deliver programming to "book deserts", or areas within the city located outside of walking distance to any library branch.
- Reading School District: The first "Red Knights in Training" program will better prepare incoming pre shool-age students and their families for success in kindergarten.
- Schuylkill Valley Community Library: The "Avoid the Slide and Leap into Summer" literacy based program for preschoolers and elementary students will extend reading into the community through instruction and hands-on activities.
The grant opportunity was available to Ready.Set.READ! (RSR) partner schools, Summer Learning Coalition members and other organizations serving Berks County Title 1 students and were awarded through a competitive process based on a review by a panel of community volunteers, including Ready.Set.READ! and United Way of Berks County board and committee members. Each organization could request up to $5,000.