Last weekend many communities across the country (including my own) celebrated national “Read Across America Day “ a program of the National Educational Association, with the hope of building “a nation of readers”. Forty-five million parents, educators, librarians, children, etc. were expected to participate in the event. The day marked Dr Seuss’s 108th birthday and a “Seussational celebration” was expected. “The Lorax”, written by Dr Seuss, was the chosen book this year, not only because it’s fun to read but also because of its “green theme” which highlights the need to save our trees and our environment. Universal Studios also chose the same day, March 2, to introduce their new movie, “The Lorax” based on the book. You can watch the trailer here.
The NEA states, ”Motivating children to read is an important factor in student achievement and creating lifelong successful readers. Research has shown that children who are motivated and spend more time reading, do better in school.”
One of our program goals is to provide literacy bags for children on the Rez so parents can work with them at home reading and working on book related activities which hopefully instills in them a love of reading and motivates them to want to read more books. One of the reasons we chose this project is because books are in short supply in many households and schools on the Rez. Many children’s reading scores are at least 2 grades behind the national average due to a lack of resources, learning difficulties, lack of parental involvement etc. Reading has to be taught and certain steps have to be followed and put together in order to teach children the skill. Educators, parents, kids and of course resources are all part of the equation.
What is a literacy bag comprised of? Check out this link which explains what it is and how to create one. Here is another site for more ideas. The web has loads of information for the most popular children’s books if you’re interested in doing a theme related bag. If you need help two good sources to check out are librarians and teachers. SFK volunteers will make the bags, we need your assistance in filling them with books and simple activities. These bags will be given out through the programs we support.
Look at this blog for an example of a bag I put together. I am working on other ones which I will share once they are completed.
If you love to read, join with us and help children on the Rez develop that love for reading too. We need books to fill the bags but we also need your ideas. Share the names of your or your children’s favorite books and learning activities. Let us know of websites with good ideas or if you’re an educator, what are some of your classroom favorites.
Please help us by making a literacy bag for our program and make an extra for a child in your community or in your family. Pledge to read at least 20 minutes a day to a child in your life for all the great benefits it offers them. Get your kids to take the oath . Help our children become a nation of readers! Thanks from Sew For Kids.