SPRINGFIELD, Mo. –For some students, summer time erases gains made during the school year.

That’s why Evangel University in Springfield is hosting a free reading clinic in June, providing one-on-one literacy support to more than 50 K-12 students.

With summer in full swing, children and parents alike are looking forward to some leisure time. But teachers often notice a dip in their students literacy skills when they return in the fall.

“I read so I can learn and that’s what I know I’m doing,” explains Levi Bowers who is a second grader taking sessions to improve his literacy skills.

For Bowers, reading is something that hasn’t always come easy to the second grader.

“So I keep on reading almost every single day and it’s fun.”

For four weeks Bowers enhances his skills in a small group working with a graduate student.

“It’s good for your education so they always have stuff that’s education so we can do stuff.”

Christina Bowers is Levi’s mom and she tells KOLR10 ,”hopefully a great benefit to help keep him where he was at, If not even progress him a little bit over the summer months. I can say how much gain he’s made.”

The literacy program is allowing her son to turn another chapter towards success.

“But he’s enjoying it and he’s loving it.”

Kaityln Schmitt is a graduate student at Evangel. She says the program prides itself on being an active way of “learning is so much doing,” says Schmitt.

By engaging the students in constant activity while still teaching them useful skills.

“Having activities that they’re experimenting with words themselves, creating words, are powerful tools to be able to help to them grow themselves as stronger learners.”

The program fulfills a course requirement for Schmitt, allowing her to put the knowledge she’s learned into practice.

“Reading can go so much beyond just the book. So we do just a lot of reading, games, that get them excited and teaching them different spelling patterns so that can transpire into their reading.”

Dr. Shonna Crawford is the Literacy Master’s Coordinator at Evangel. She hopes students will be become deeper thinkers and lifelong learners.

“It can really be the ticket to what they want to do in their own lives,” explains Crawford.

She says the program is designed to equip classroom teachers for the current demand for literacy achievement.

“We just hope to provide more of it by attracting more graduates students to our program. To serve as teachers in the literacy lab.”

The free sessions are available to elementary, middle and high school students, whether they are in public school, private school, or home school. Crawford says the clinic will be repeated next summer.

Families interested in next summer’s clinic should contact the Evangel University Education Department via email at literacylab@evangel.edu, or call (417) 865-2815, ext. 8548.