Summer Reading Program 2012
Welcome to the 2012 Summer Reading Challenge with the theme Dream Big, READ!. This calendar offers ideas and activities to spark interest and understanding of our world and the many people who live here.
The summer is just beginning and it is a perfect time to visit your local library with your children. Libraries offer puppet shows, arts and crafts, story time, and many other fun activities you can enjoy during summer break. We hope you plan to check out a variety of interesting books so you can read with your children and encourage them to read every day. As you read with your children and they read independently, they will build brainpower, increase their vocabulary, enhance their knowledge base and be more prepared to return to school this fall.
Research tells us, "The single most important activity for building the knowledge required for eventual success in reading is reading aloud to children. This is especially true in the early years."
We encourage you to get your entire family involved. We know when parents, grandparents, childcare providers, siblings, and others read together each day for 20 minutes, critical foundations for success are put in place. We invite you to join our family this summer...Dream Big, READ!
Gary R. Herbert
Summer Reading Program Downloads
IMPORTANT - Children should read throughout the summer, June 1-August 31, then send in the Family Progress Card for a certificate from Governor and Mrs. Herbert.
|Document||Click to Download|
|Governor's 2012 Summer Reading Challenge||Print out ()|
|Bookmarks||Bookmark front ()|
|Bookmark back ()|
|Book Recommendations||Book Recommendations ()|
|Family Progress Card||Progress Card ()|
The above file is presented in PDF (). PDF is higher quality and suitable for printing out. You'll need to download Adobe Acrobat Reader (free download) if your computer doesn't already have it installed.
What will reading to a child 20 minutes a day accomplish?
By Teresa Oster
To understand the complex process of literacy acquisition, one might consider recent brain research that points to the critical development of a child's brain in the years from birth through age 3 and the subsequent impact. Recent medical advances have made it possible for us to glimpse brain activity beginning in the womb through adulthood. We've learned that from birth through age 3, babies' brains develop at a faster rate than any other time in their lives. By age 3, children's brains are two-and-a-half times more active than adults' brains and remain that way until approximately age 11.
Importance of synapses
A baby's brain creates synapses or "connections" that will affect future ability to learn, to adapt, and to interact socially and emotionally with others. These synapses are a fundamental basis of learning and are directly affected by a baby's early learning experiences. Positive social and emotional interactions with caring adults and appropriate amounts of stimulation actually increase the number of synapses the brain creates and maintains.
Noted child psychiatrist Stanley Greenspan and pediatrician T. Berry Brazelton state: "Early childhood is both the most critical and most vulnerable time in any child's development. Our research and that of others demonstrates that in the first few years, the ingredients for intellectual, emotional, and moral growth are laid down. If they are not, while a developing child can still acquire them, the price rises and the chances for success decrease with each subsequent year. We cannot fail children in the early years."
So how does brain development relate to reading? A person may wonder what good it does to read to a baby when he or she doesn't even understand the words being read aloud. Learning to read occurs much like the process of learning to walk. It is a process that occurs over a period of time and with repeated practice. A baby typically learns first to roll onto his or her stomach, then to scoot, then crawl, then to pull himself or herself up to a standing position while holding on to something, and finally attempting the first step. It takes many attempts before a toddler can walk independently.
The same is true of literacy development. It is important to expose children to books and reading long before they actually read their first words. Waiting until a child is 5 or 6 to begin reading with him or her is like expecting an infant to stand up and walk out of the room all at once in one day.
The process of learning to read begins before birth as the fetus listens to the sound of its mother's voice. Language acquisition is one of the critical foundations necessary in learning to read. As a baby grows, his or her ability to differentiate between voices and interpret emotions is key to reading readiness. Both skills are critical milestones in reading and literacy development.
The Road to Success Initiative
The Road to Success Initiative, which reinforces the importance of 'Reading Each Day for 20 Minutes,' has grown from 50 pilot schools the first year, to 250 schools this past school year.
In partnership with participating schools, the Road to Success Initiative has:
- Aligned with school improvement plans.
- Assessed an important need for the students in supplying gentle reminders.
- Become an active advocate for reading and literacy efforts.
- Collaborated with businesses, organizations, and other community members.