Read for the Record

Monday, October 4, 2010

Set a Record and Help Spread Literacy!

I just filled out my pledge for Read for the Record Day and created my profile at We Give Books (there’s a button in my sidebar). I hope you will too. Jumpstart, “a leading nonprofit organization dedicated to ensuring that every child in America enters school prepared to succeed,” has partnered with the Pearson Foundation and the Penguin Group publishers to set a record for the most adults and children reading the same book on the same day: this Thursday, October 7.

Pledging to Read

We read every day – a lot. We don’t need a pledge to motivate us. But if our pledge brings attention to the campaign for early literacy efforts, I’ll pledge till the cows come home! If you choose to pledge, Jumpstart will also ask if you are interested in making a monetary donation, which I am neither advocating nor discouraging. I simply appreciate the idea of rallying around a cause for reading! I'm planning on asking B's preschool teacher if I can share the story with his class to include them in the pledge!

Sharing More than Story Time
The Snowy Day
The book selected by Jumpstart for the Read for the Record Campaign is Ezra Jack Keats’ The Snowy Day. All Keats books are classics to enjoy with children. Perhaps this one will set the mood for the changing weather, help readers in warm climates describe snow to children who’ve never seen it, or introduce sensory experiences of “crunching” steps, icy hands, and wet socks. There are several great extension activities offered on the website. I considered creating a snow activity to share with you to fulfill my promise of developmental tools. However, I realized the greater lesson is not in the story, but in the action.

A Lesson in Giving

By visiting We Give Books and reading The Snowy Day on their website, you trigger the donation of a book to a child in need. From their website:

We Give Books is a free website that enables anyone with access to the Internet to put books in the hands of children who don’t have them, simply by reading online.

Simply choose the charity you want to read for and then select the books you want to read. For each book you read online, we donate a book to a leading literacy group on your behalf.

The more you read, the more we give.

There are over 50 titles to read at We Give Books, and titles are added regularly. We’ll be frequent visitors to the site for two reasons. First, we can read lots of great books, for free, from anywhere with internet access! Second, and more importantly, I’ll be talking with B about the good we can do through the simple action of reading these books. I’ll tap his social-emotional development and challenge him to consider the conditions of the children to whom our reading will trigger donations. We’ll focus on gratitude for the circumstances we enjoy as well as what we can do to improve the circumstances of those less fortunate. And if The Snowy Day can help me effectively communicate those values to my sons, it will certainly be developmentally valuable.

Appropriate for: Everyone

Will you join Read for the Record or We Give Books? Are you already participating in a donation campaign? What other ways do you share the concept of giving with your child?

Don't forget to come back Friday and link up your book picks for the week at Feed Me Books Friday!

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