I had a very difficult time learing to read. I did not grow up surrounded by books or being read to, it makes a difference. Not being a pre-reader made it difficult to become a reader. One day a teacher whose name I don’t even remember took the time to help me. He told me to take my time and sound it out and all of a sudden the letters came together to make a word. It sounds so simple, but no one had ever told me that before. I had no idea that was the way to read. If I hadn’t learned to read when I did, I am absolutely sure that I would not have done as well in school as I did and I would not have had the entire world open up to me the way it did because of my love of reading.
My daughters will have a different experience. They are surrounded by books. They are read to every day. Their transition from being read to and reading on their own will not be as difficult.
But I’m not just commited to my children, I am commited to all the children of our nation, so I took Jumpstart’s Read for the Record Pledge. It reads,
I pledge to read Llama Llama Red Pajama by Anna Dewdney with children in my life on October 6, 2011. By sitting down to read, I’ll be joining more than 2 MILLION people in calling for an end to America’s early education achievement gap. Together, we’ll stand up to demand that all children receive the quality early education they deserve.
Will you take the pledge with me? Will you join me and many, many more (celebrities even) on October 6th and read Llama Llama Red Pajama with a little one in your life? It’s not hard, even if you don’t have the book you can read along online or you can make an event of it and sign up a free “red pajama reading party” on October 6th at your local Gymboree Play & Music.
For the past three years, Gymboree and Jumpstart have paired together with celebrities like Justin Bieber, Nelly Furtado and Patti LaBelle, and families around the world, to raise awareness for the importance of reading early and often. Most parents aren’t aware that reading to young children is essential. 1 in 3 children in the U.S. begin kindergarten behind. The millions of children in the U.S. living in poverty are even more likely to fall into this statistic because like me they are growing up in homes without books.
If you pledge before September 30th, Jumpstart will give you a chance to win a $77 gift card to 77Kids by American Eagle. I also have something for you to sweeten the deal. I am giving away 5 copies of Jumpstart’s Read for the Record book, Llama Llama Red Pajama.
To enter just follow the instructions in the widget.
In exchange for telling you about the pledge, Gymboree is offering my children a month of free classes and providing prizing for this giveaway. All statements and opinions are mine.