On Friday, October 9, 2015 the Friends of Queen Anne’s County Library hosted a luncheon at the Commerce Street Creamery in Centreville to celebrate the completion of the first Reading Club with The ArcCCR, an organization that works to create a path of opportunity for children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Nine ArcCCR individuals were paired with Friends’ members/readers. Each ArcCCR individual selected the title he or she wanted to read, a title appropriate to the individual’s ability and interest. The individuals and readers met for an hour each week at the library or another public venue.
The Reading Club provided an opportunity for individuals to gain additional public speaking proficiency, confidence in a new experience, and increased pleasure about reading. For the first several weeks, most readers reported that they read the selected title to their individuals, but by the end of the six week session most individuals were reading to their readers. Some individuals read more than one title and several pairs continued beyond the initial six weeks.
At the luncheon, the individuals talked about the titles they read and what they liked about the Reading Club. Taylor, Corrine, and Kara found the reading sessions fun. Amy liked reading together. Kristi liked discussing the book, and Kristi’s reader, Linda, commented on Kristi’s wonderful insights into the title. Another reader, Steve, said that he and his individual, Bud, quizzed each other about aspects of what they read, with Bud answering more of questions correctly than Steve.
At the celebratory luncheon, the Friends presented certificates of completion to the nine Arc individuals.
Mary Anne Lange, The ArcCCR Employment Consultant, and Mary Jackson, Friends president, coordinated the Reading Club. The Friends plans to sponsor a second Reading Club next spring. Anyone interested in participating as a reader should contact Mary Jackson friendsofQACLibrary@gmail.com.