The library at the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy has hosted Family Reading Night as an outreach program for 13 years. The event is held annually for approximately 150 grade school students (accompanied by parents) from school districts Aurora West 129 and Aurora East 131. Schools represented in past years include: Gates, McCleery, Hall, Smith, Fearn, Oak Park and Allen Elementary Schools.Family Reading Night is an annual statewide event, held on the third Thursday in November, to encourage families to spend quality time reading together. The goal of IMSA’s Community Family Reading Night is to encourage literacy and reading while incorporating what IMSA does best: math and science, in the program activities.
IMSA students lead the library’s story-time and coordinate a book give-away. Science activities are prepared and delivered by IMSA Professional Field Services (PFS) and IMSA Allies. Attendees also participate in craft activities and can even have their faces painted. IMSA students inspire the younger student attendees through the “Kids Teaching Kids” model in which the IMSA students are the “teachers.”
IMSA staff and faculty also volunteer to work during the event. Parent attendees are offered campus tours led by Admission’s Student Ambassadors and can also sit in on the activities.