Designed 25 years ago, by a group of concerned medical
practitioners, Reach Out and Read builds on the unique relationship
between trusted doctors and parents to develop early literacy
skills via the existing healthcare structure. Click here to see where our
Georgia sites are located.
The Reach Out and Read model was developed by medical
practitioners in recognition of prevailing brain development
research as well as their own experiences working with low income
and poverty-stricken families.
During regular pediatric check-ups, Reach Out and Read
pediatricians, nurse practitioners, and family practitioners give
new, developmentally-appropriate books to children, ages 6 months
to 5 years, and advise parents on the importance of reading aloud.
The Reach Out and Read Program model:
Primary care medical providers are trained to deliver early
literacy anticipatory guidance to parents of children 6 months
through 5 years of age during each well-child visit.
During well-child visits for children ages 6 months through 5
years, the provider gives the child a new,
developmentally-appropriate book to take home, building a
collection of 10 new books in the home before the child goes to
kindergarten. The provider also repeatedly prescribes reading
aloud, every day. Reach Out and Read provides books for children in
more than 14 languages, including Arabic, Chinese, Russian,
Spanish, and of course English.
Reach Out and Read program sites also create literacy-rich
environments that may include gently-used books for waiting room
use or for siblings to take home. In some waiting rooms, Reach Out
and Read volunteers model for parents the pleasures and techniques
of reading aloud to very young children.
Since Reach Out and Read's inception, 15 peer-reviewed studies
have proven that children served by a Reach Out and Read provider
show up to a six month developmental edge over their
non-participating peers and parents are up to four times more
likely to read aloud with their children regularly.
Families served by Reach Out and Read read together more often,
and their children enter kindergarten with larger vocabularies and
stronger language skills, better prepared to achieve their
potential in school and beyond.
For pediatric primary care providers who serve Hispanic/Latino
families, Reach Out and Read offers additional training and
resources through our Leyendo Juntos (Reading Together) program.
Developed by medical providers who are bilingual/bicultural and who
have extensive experience working with Latino families, Leyendo
Juntos includes bilingual prompts and culturally sensitive literacy
Reach Out and Read partners with nearly 5,000 program sites and
distributes 6.5 million books per year, including more than 115,000
books a year and over a million books since 1994 given to the most
at risk children and their families in Georgia. Reach Out and Read
aims to prepare Georgia's youngest children for school success by
partnering with pediatric care providers to prescribe books and
encourage families to read together. We partner with more than 63
medical locations in 28 counties across the state in effort to
reach all of Georgia's children in need.