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Summer Reading Club

June 11- August 5, 2023
Helen Crocker Russell Library of Horticulture, San Francisco Botanical Garden
Library Hours: Friday-Wednesday, 10am-4pm

Summer Reading Events:

Sunday, June 11, 10am: Family Story Time & Garden Walk

Monday, June 12, 2pm: SFPL's Story Hour in the Garden with K-Fai Steele

Sunday, June 18, 2pm: Nature Printing for Kids with artist Latifat Apatira

Wednesday, June 21, 2pm: Children's Arts & Crafts Workshop with Yuval Zommer

Sunday, July 9, 10am: Family Story Time & Garden Walk

Sunday, July 16, 2pm: Butterfly Crafts

Sunday, July 23, 2pm: Teddy Bear Tea Party

Summer Reading Club FAQs

Teacher's Resource Collection

Why a Summer Reading Club?

Studies show that all children experience learning losses in the summer months if they don’t participate in educational activities. This learning deficit is known as the “summer slide.” Reading for fun helps children continue learning all year round. Our unique program was designed by the GGGP librarians and youth education staff to encourage literacy, curiosity, and physical activity. (For more information and the latest research, visit the National Summer Learning Association’s website at

How does it work?
The Summer Reading Club is an eight-week reading and activity program for children ages 0-12. Each child who registers receives a logbook containing weekly garden themes that encourage reading, physical activity, and nature exploration. When your child completes a week, bring their logbook to the library to receive free seeds and a raffle ticket for the weekly prize drawing. Kids may register for the Summer Reading Club at any point during June or July.


Who can join the Summer Reading Club? What if my child can’t yet read independently?
Children ages 0-12 may join the Summer Reading Club. If your child is not yet able to read books independently, they can be read to by adults or older kids. The stories and activities in the logbook are designed to stretch young minds while being fun for all ages.

Is it free?
Yes! The Summer Reading Club is free and so is use of the Library. Access to the Gardens of Golden Gate Park is free to San Francisco residents with proof of address. (The Gardens are free for all visitors the second Tuesday of every month and daily from 7:30-9:00 am. See for full admission details.)

How many books do children need to read?
Participants should read at least one book and complete at least one non-book activity each week. (Older kids can read part of a longer book.) Kids are encouraged to read more books and do more activities if they’d like.


How is progress tracked? Do children receive incentives for participating?
Every week when your child has completed a logbook page, they should show their logbook to one of our librarians. They will receive several seeds as well as a raffle ticket for the weekly prize drawing. Prizes include nature-related children's books, garden gift cards, and other fun treats. Caregivers can receive (optional) biweekly email reminders from a librarian to help your family stay on track!

Can we check out books from the Helen Crocker Russell Library? Are you part of the SF Public Library?
Our library is open to the public but is not part of the SF Public Library system. Anyone is welcome to read library books on-site! Gardens of Golden Gate Park members can apply for a free library card at the library. A Helen Crocker Russell Library card gives you access to our various print collections as well as over 7,000 ebooks.

When can we visit the Library?
The Library is open Friday-Wednesday, 10am-4pm. The Summer Reading Club is drop-in, so families can stop by any time during the Library’s open hours to read books and mark goals.


Do we need to visit the Library every week?
If your family can’t make it to the Library every week, that’s okay! Children should still track reading and activities in their logbook.

Contact us:
Call 415-661-1316 x403 or email [email protected]

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