Welcome to the Winnetka Rotary Literacy Projects Blog

Our literacy committee blog shares information about our Rotary literacy projects and events associated with sharing access to the many different ways in which people read. Some access reading the "traditional" way, some have computers read books, Internet pages, newspapers, and other print material. Our goal is to make the "written word" accessible to every person of every age and ability.

Please come back to find out about our past, present, and future projects.

What is the impact of illiteracy?

Illiteracy causes more harm than merely having a reduced ability to read and write. Illiteracy causes entire families to remain isolated from the everyday fabric of their local and global communities, to remain isolated from inspiration acquired by "enough education," and to remain isolated from a means to share history beyond the reaches of their spoken word.
----Dr. Jeanne Beckman

Monday, June 7, 2010

Winnetka Rotary fundraiser for Winnetka Library Summer Project

Winnetka-Northfield Rotary president Rich Lalley announced a community collaboration with the local library where we inspire our children to delve into summer reading while raising funds for the benefit of Reach Out and Read Illinois:
The Winnetka-Northfield Library District is pleased to work with the Rotary Club of Winnetka-Northfield this summer for the benefit of Reach Out & Read Illinois. Rotarians help by sponsoring young readers!

Reach Out & Read provides children's books to pediatricians who serve families in low income communities, to encourage parents and caregivers to read to their children and to increase literacy rates.

The children of our communities who will participate in this year's Summer Reading Program -- Be a Reading Superhero! -- and who choose to sign up for this special program will help to raise money for this worthy cause. Hundreds of children sign up for Summer Reading each year and thousands of books are read.

So, where do Rotarians, parents, and community members, come in?

Please let library director David Seleb or Youth Services know (at 847-446-7220) if you are interested in being a reading sponsor. You may choose to donate a certain amount of money for a certain number of books read by our children. For instance, .10 for the first 500 total books read. In that case, you donation would be $50.00. This would encourage our children to read more throughout the summer.

Or, you may simply donate a set amount of your choosing to the program. Either way, our children will know that they can make a difference in the lives of less fortunate children just by reading.

Our staff will produce a video with some of the participating children who will talk about their experiences with the program and their desire to help. We will show this video at a Rotary Club program in the fall and invite some of the children and their family members to attend to talk about their participation and to thank the Rotary Club members.

Please send David Seleb a message if you are interested in being a sponsor with details of how you would like to donate. If you have any questions about the program, please contact him at 847-446-7220 or at david@winnetkalibrary.org.

Thanks for being a reading superhero!

What is Reach Out and Read? Here's a quote from their organization's site
About Us

Reach Out and Read (ROR) is an evidence-based nonprofit organization that promotes early literacy and school readiness in pediatric exam rooms nationwide by giving new books to children and advice to parents about the importance of reading aloud.

ROR builds on the unique relationship between parents and medical providers to develop critical early reading skills in children, beginning at 6 months of age. The 3.9 million families served annually by ROR read together more often, and their children enter kindergarten better prepared to succeed, with larger vocabularies and stronger language skills.

Our Mission

Reach Out and Read prepares America's youngest children to succeed in school by partnering with doctors to prescribe books and encourage families to read together.

Doctors, nurse practitioners, and other medical professionals incorporate Reach Out and Read's evidence-based model into regular pediatric checkups, by advising parents about the importance of reading aloud and giving developmentally-appropriate books to children. The program begins at the 6-month checkup and continues through age 5, with a special emphasis on children growing up in low-income communities. 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.

The Reach Out and Read Model

Pediatric healthcare providers (including pediatricians, family physicians, and pediatric nurse practitioners) are trained in the three-part ROR model to promote early literacy and school readiness:

* In the exam room, doctors and nurses speak with parents about the importance of reading aloud to their young children every day, and offer age-appropriate tips and encouragement.
* The pediatric primary care provider gives every child 6 months through 5 years old a new, developmentally-appropriate children's book to take home and keep.
* In the waiting room, displays, information, and books create a literacy-rich environment. Where possible, volunteer readers entertain the children, modeling for parents the pleasures - and techniques - of reading aloud.
See http://www.reachoutandread.org/about/

I am always inspired by communities of children, families, professionals, and organizations taking small but meaningful steps to make our world a better place. In this project, individuals, families, and organizations get a lot of bang for their buck: Encouraging individual children to read during the summer, promoting volunteerism in children who can raise funds via their reading efforts, promoting literacy in at-risk families through the Reach Out and Read Program, promoting pediatrician-parent collaboration in achieving child development goals, and strengthening community relationships through volunteerism. Whether it's the actual reading by the children, sponsoring of the readers by parents and community members, or other ways to draw our community together, there is something every one of us can do. What have you done today?
Dr. Jeanne Beckman