Earlier this year we heard from a mother at Avery County Smart Start in North Carolina.
Her daughter had no interest in reading. In fact, if her Mom pulled out a book to read the little girl would take it and put it right back on the shelf. In August, having participated in Raising A Reader for a few months, the little girl’s Mom had a fantastic story to tell.
”My daughter would actually pick up her red book bag, bring it to me and pull out the books to read. For the first time we would sit on her bed, cuddle and read together.”
What happened next brought this Mom to tears. Her husband, who had never read with his daughter before, joined them in their nightly reading routines so they could share books together as a family. This Mom called it a “special family moment” and she was so excited she had to tell the teachers at Avery Smart Start the very next day.
Raising A Reader’s little red book bag has helped more than one million families develop, practice, and maintain the habit of sharing books. Thanks to your support we are reaching more and more children each year and continue to develop innovative programs such as Raising A Reader With STEM.
Thank you for all that you do to support child literacy through Raising A Reader! You truly are making a difference.
Yours in book sharing The Raising A Reader Team
Ps. Give back on #GivingTuesday! This year on Dec 2 Microsoft will generously match all donations to Literacy Programs for Children and STEM Literacy for 100 Disadvantaged Children dollar for dollar! Save the date! And be part of the world-wide movement to give back on #GivingTuesday
If you have been following the headlines lately you will know that Engineering, Computing and Math majors are amongst the top earners for American college graduates, closely followed by Science. You will also know that these innovative professions are sadly lacking in diversity and are still out of reach for many minority populations and low-income populations, English Language Learners and women.
Studies show that introducing children at an early age to Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) concepts creates a foundation of knowledge on which STEM comprehension can be built through early education and beyond.
Now is the time to engage the next generation in STEM right from the beginning and to combat barriers that lead to a prevalent lack of diversity in our STEM industries.
Raising A Reader With STEM
This year Raising A Reader has created an expertly selected collection of STEM books, materials and parent trainings. Delivering through Raising A Reader’s network of affiliates in low income and non-English speaking communities we can ensure STEM learning reaches children from a young age who would otherwise miss out.
Your personal commitment to educating underserved children across the nation is so inspiring and your efforts to support Raising A Reader through Literacy Programs for Children have been vital!
If you can, please consider making a special donation to our Microproject STEM Literacy for 100 Disadvantaged Children. Funds raised from October through December will directly support a pilot program to implement Raising A Reader With STEM this school year.
$100 provides our STEM program to one child for one full year – but every small amount helps!
Further information about Raising A Reader With STEM can be found here.
Thank you again for all you do to support child literacy and family engagement programs across the nation! Together we can all truly say “I am Raising A Reader”
Yours in Book Sharing The Raising A Reader Team
PS. If you have already made a donation to STEM Literacy for 100 Disadvantaged Children, THANK YOU! Perhaps you would like to share your gift on Facebook or Twitter?
That statement came from a Mom in Pheonix, Arizona. She was part of a Southwest Human Development initiative to target illiteracy and deliver Raising A Reader right where it was absolutely needed most.
Since you joined us with your generous support we have told you a lot about Raising A Reader for Elementary Schools in Illinois and programs for pre-schoolers in California. We know that we are changing lives in child care centers in Baltimore. And we know that Raising A Reader works as a program in Public Libraries across the country.
But did you know in 2011 Raising A Reader became available to families right in the buildings in which they live, in low-income housing?
We believe - and we know you do too - that every child deserves the best start in life. With more than one third of US children entering school each year without the basic literacy skills they need we are determined to reach every child at-risk wherever they are.
Including the buildings in which they live!
The 2011 partnership between Raising A Reader, Southwest Human Development and Arizona Multihousing Association enabled a regular meeting place for parents and their children to rotate beautiful high-quality Raising A Reader books. Through initial training and ongoing support parents, including many with limited English proficiency and/or low literacy skills, learn to engage their children with books as well as being introduced to the local public library.
Since 2011 3,000 children have participated with their families.
Trainers heard from parents that they never knew reading was important from birth, that their own parents had never read to them and they had never known the tremendous joy of sharing books.
In feedback another Mom wrote:"I loved that you lent us books so I had the privilege of reading with my children. Raising A Reader helped me develop a better relationship with my kids. No matter where we are, every moment is a good opportunity to read and let our imaginations fly."
Imagine the impact on each child’s life to have their parents able to engage in their learning right from the start!
Independent evaluations show participating families are developing and sustaining home reading routines as a result of the program. Parents report a 471% increase in time spent sharing books with their children (five or more times a week) and participating Spanish-speaking families have increased library visits with their children by 300%.
It is only through the continued generosity of you our supporters that we gain such traction in advancing the standard of early literacy across the country, one child at a time! Thank you for playing a crucial role in generating change for so many children and families.
Yours in Book SharingThe Raising A Reader Team
Ps. Can you help?October through December we are raising funds to provide Science Technology Engineering Math (STEM) programs to 100 children from non-English speaking and economically disadvantaged communities under-represented in these fields.
Just $100 provides STEM to 1 child for 1 full year!
If you can help, join us at Stem Programs for 100 Disadvantaged Children
A special welcome to our new supporters! We are so excited to share our latest news with you. Every few months we will let you know what we are doing with your commitment.
This month as summer ends and school starts up again hundreds of thousands of children across the country are receiving their red Raising A Reader book bags for the very first time For many of these children the opportunity to read high-quality books and share them with their families will be the first in their lives. Studies show that less than half of US children living at or below the poverty line start school with the reading and language skills they need for future success. Children from non-English speaking backgrounds are even more at-risk. Raising A Reader works to combat these issues and help ensure that ALL children can make the start they need no matter what their background.
New programs, new children and new families from California to Illinois In La Honda-Pescadero Unified School District on California’s South Coast the opportunity gap for low-income Spanish-speaking children is a serious concern. Working with local community organizations to assess local need and promote literacy, Raising A Reader will be implemented as part of a suite of services aimed at supporting South Coast families. We are excited to be part of this local initiative that will help to ensure South Coast children have the strong start they deserve.
This Fall, in Mundelein Illinois, the Fremont Public Library will launch a two-year program focused on children who speak English as a second language. The program, which will begin by specifically targeting 80 children from District 75’s bilingual preschool, will reach children just as they are developing their literacy skills. Featuring bicultural and bilingual books the program will focus on empowering parents to work through the language and learning barriers they face in order to better support their child’s education.
- Did you know, 80% of Raising A Reader families are living at or below the poverty line and 48% speak English as a second language -
Thank you for joining us with your support! It is only through the support of generous donors and funders like you that we can implement our programs across 34 states and plan for the future of child literacy in this country. It is with humble gratitude that we see you come together as a community of donors, each giving what you can, towards this monolithic goal of ensuring every child has the best possible academic start. Together we can make a real difference in the life of every child and every family we serve.
With gratitude, Yours in book sharing The Raising A Reader Team
Today Only! Microsoft is matching all donations made to Literacy Programs for Children.
Today you can Double Your Impact on early childhood literacy and continue to provide children all over the country access to the joys of reading.
This offer applies to any gift made after 9am PDT (12noon EDT) at Literacy Programs for Children.
Thank you for choosing to support us in our aim to serve children and families across the country with the Raising A Reader programs.
Yours in Book Sharing The Raising A Reader Team
For more information on how Microsoft supports youth initiatives see http://www.globalgiving.org/youthspark and check out #YouthSpark on Twitter
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