First 5 California and Scholastic have joined together to place 30,000
books into the hands of some of the states most at-risk children in an
effort to encourage a love of reading from an early age.
The Reading Power! program celebrated its launch today with a story
time at Coldwater Canyon Elementary School in North Hollywood,
California. More than 150 kindergarten students received a free copy of
the childrens book Lola Loves Stories.
Our mission is helping prepare young children to enter school ready to
succeed, said Renee Webster-Hawkins, First 5 Californias interim
executive director. With Californias literacy rate continuing to rank
below the national average, Reading Power! provides essential
resources to teachers and parents, as well as inspiration to young kids,
so we can accomplish this goal together.
Reading Power! program kits are designed to enhance literacy
activities in preschool and kindergarten classrooms. Each kit includes
English and Spanish versions of Lola Loves Stories, teaching guides, a
poster, and worksheets that can be incorporated into lesson plans. It
also contains bilingual activities that students can take home to
complete with their families.
The free kits will be distributed to 14,000 teachers across California
who work at schools in primarily Latino neighborhoods that have
household incomes of $50,000 or less. Materials produced for the
Reading Power! program are available to all California teachers. To
access these free resources, visit www.scholastic.com/first5CA.
We share in the mission along with First 5 California to make sure
every child has the opportunity to experience the joys of owning a
book, said Ann Amstutz-Hayes, senior vice president, Scholastic
National Partnerships. We hope this program will inform families about
the importance of reading at home with their children and encouraging
them to take time to read every day.
Todays event included representatives from First 5 California,
Scholastic and the Los Angeles Unified School District, along with
teachers and parents from Coldwater Canyon Elementary School. First 5
Californias Hands-On Health Express a bilingual traveling
health exhibit for young kids and their families was also on site to
reinforce the message that daily reading activities are an important
part of a childs healthy development.
Were pleased to be here at the launch of the Reading Power! program
in our school district and encourage families to learn together each day
through books, said Monica Carazo, LAUSD Office of the Superintendent.
About First 5 California
At First 5 California, we fund programs that educate parents,
grandparents, caregivers and teachers about the critical role they play
during a child’s first five years. Since our creation in 1998, we’ve
supported millions of families with programs and services designed to
help more California kids grow up healthy and ready to succeed in school
– and in life. For more information, please visit www.first5california.com/parents.