In the past few weeks, thousands of
new children's books have been arriving at Reach Out and Read
program sites across America. This is the first shipment of 500,000
books donated by Scholastic as part of a national collaboration to
promote early language development announced at the Clinton Global
Initiative America meeting last year.
Reach Out and Read is partnering with the American Academy of
Pediatrics (AAP), Scholastic and Too Small to Fail, using a
multi-pronged approach to ensure that doctors and nurses have the
information, tools, and books they need to help families make
reading aloud with their children a daily activity.
Research shows that a child's
first three years offer a critically important window for brain
development. Reading aloud, talking, singing and rhyming every day
during these early years helps young children reach their full
Family Reading ReportTM: Fifth
Edition, conducted by Scholastic and YouGov, shows
that 50% more parents from highest-income households versus
lowest-income households have received advice that children should
be read aloud to from birth - a recent recommendation from AAP.
Further, additional research has found that by age four, children
in poverty hear 30 million fewer words than their higher-income
caregivers have a unique opportunity to help close this word gap.
Through the trusting relationship that doctors and nurses have with
their patients, they are able to influence parents from all income
levels and provide them with information on how reading aloud from
birth will benefit their children.
The books have been received with
great excitement by Reach Out and Read doctors and program
coordinators, who appreciate the impact that these books will have
on the families they serve.
"The donated books we received will
be distributed among our clinics and given to children in need,
many of whom do not regularly have access to books. Your support
inspires us to continue working towards the shared goal of
fostering both literacy development and a love of reading that will
invaluably benefit them for the rest of their lives." Rosie Ball
and Janie Klapko, Reach Out and Read, Michigan
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