Summer is over, phooey! Now, how did we keep those kiddos reading?
Some communities addressed that challenge in super ways. Take Atlanta. This forward-thinking city launched a program designed to address “summer slide” on the day before last class. “School’s Out! Reading is In!” launched on May 22 for kindergarten to 12th grade across more than 100 schools. 50,000 students received 4 books, appropriate to their grade-level, to be read over the summer. An accompanying letter asked parents to spend time reading with their children.
This is the scary part. “Research shows that children who have not developed some basic literacy skills by the time they enter school are three or four times more likely to drop out in later years,” said Dr. Alisha Hill, Atlanta Public Schools’ 6-12th grade literacy coordinator. “A national adult literacy survey indicates that 44 million adults in the United States cannot read well enough to read a simple story to a child.” Read up here.
Family involvement is key in encouraging a life-long love of reading, and schools who partner with families know that learning takes no breaks.
Go, Atlanta. Read to your children. And applaud as your children read to you.