Afterschool Book Club is a weekly program. Intermediate and advanced readers gather to share their interests in a setting where it is safe to be smart and fun to experience American history while making new friends. New York Public Library.Using Historic Richmond Town as a backdrop, students have the opportunity to read, imagine, and explore authentic objects from the American past. No preparation is needed to begin attending Book Club; all books are available at
Our educator welcomes and encourages participants with exciting literary selections every week, and occasional visits from Historic Richmond Town's curators give Book Club kids an inside look at how museums work. This program is intended for boys and girls in grades 4 through 7. In this Staten Island Advance news story readers told, in their own words, what Book Club means to them.
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A recent focus on the Titanic involved reading passages about the ill-fated voyage and studying maps of the ocean floor, authentic news stories, historic photographs, and an actual passenger's guidebook from another ship of Titanic's era. Another recent series focused on Mark Twain's The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. By promoting "The Big Read" program of the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as local readings organized by Staten Island OutLOUD, this selection encouraged community involvement by club members while connecting with the American themes presented at Historic Richmond Town.
Book Club participants have gone on to become apprentices and volunteers at Historic Richmond Town and to win awards for their own original research projects—strong indicators that the program succeeds in inspiring the next generation of American scholars.