What is Raising A Reader?
Raising A Reader is a national nonprofit organization that offers an evidence-based early literacy program to help families of young children (ages 0-5) develop, practice, and maintain habits of reading together at home.
Why? Nearly half of all U.S. children enter kindergarten without the early reading skills needed for success in school. Research shows that the single most significant factor influencing a child's lifelong achievement is being read to regularly by parents and adult caregivers before starting kindergarten.
Since it was founded in 1999, Raising A Reader has reached more than 811,000 children through its affiliations with local organizations such as United Way, Head Start, public libraries, home visiting programs and early learning programs in school districts.
How Raising A Reader Works
- Red Book Bags. In the Raising A Reader program, bright red book bags filled with a variety of cultural, age-appropriate, award-winning books, are rotated into the home on a weekly basis. Over the course of an average program, a child will be exposed to dozens of different titles that they can share with their familes. At the end of the RAR program, children receive a certificate of completion and their own kid-sized blue library book bag, which is filled with books and incentives designed to keep them encouraged and excited about reading, borrowing books and "book cuddling."
- Training. Local RAR coordinators are trained in interactive "read-aloud" techniques that help stimulate early brain development and language acquisition in children. They, in turn, train parents and caregivers in these book sharing techniques. Even those adults with limited English or low literacy benefit greatly from the training.
How to Particpate in Raising A Reader
Check with you child's preschool, child care provider or your local library to see if they participate in The Raising A Reader Program. A complete list of participating organizations in Mono County can be found below. Once you've found a location, signing up is easy! Simply complete the Parent Agreement, take home a Red Book Bag, and begin sharing books with your child!