Today I want to introduce you to 3 innovative literacy programs.
I’m going rogue at the very time when all of the big box store advertisements, blogs, and social media streams are filled with the latest and greatest back-to-school steals and deals. And don’t forget the mad dash from store to store to find the exact items on the school’s supply list.
So in order to help stop the madness, I am focusing on 3 different organizations across the United States making a difference in a child’s literacy and education in innovative ways.
1. The Root by The Conscious Connect
Libraries shouldn’t be the only place that children have access to a selection of culturally relevant books. Not to mention, reading becomes a normal part of daily life when it is seamlessly integrated into everyday life (as opposed to something one is instructed to sit down and DO). It becomes not only a normal part but an enjoyable part of a child’s day.
Learning about The Conscious Connect on Instagram was therefore really exciting for me. This foundation hails from Springfield, Ohio and is a “cultural renaissance and street revitalization organization that mobilizes neighborhoods around urban education and literacy.”
The Conscious Connect developed their innovative literacy program The Root “to promote self-awareness, identity development, and reading comprehension, while increasing self-esteem among youth – by mobilizing neighborhood barbershops and salons as community resource centers of urban culture and education to end book deserts in Ohio.”
Just like food deserts, there are neighborhoods across the United States where access to new and relevant children’s books is a challenge. So, learning about this program and their goal to #endbookdeserts was really exciting. It overall sentiment reminds me of the barber in Iowa who gave free haircuts to children who would read to him and that story still puts a smile on my face.
2. Promising Pages
The second of the three innovative literacy programs is Promising Pages out of Charlotte, North Carolina. The facts they share around the science behind books should not be ignored. It is, therefore, important to their community that they have an impact on the estimated 60,000 children in their city who own few, if any books.
One of their approaches? A Magic Book Party for kindergarteners and first graders! And to that, I give a huge high five, because books really ARE magic.
Promising Pages creates a whole magical world at their parties – with bookworm mascots who explain that, “any child who is lucky enough to hold the Magic Book will grow up to be smart, successful, and do anything they want to do in the world!”
As part of the party, each child receives a wrapped Magic Book of their very own. But the program doesn’t stop there. Program leaders visit the children again within two weeks to reinforce the message and gift another book to each child. The visits are then done on a monthly basis with a difference theme and early literacy message.
Each of their additional programs is just as innovative, so please take a minute to learn more about them here.
3. Milk + Bookies™
The final of the three innovative literacy programs is Milk + Bookies™ whose headquarters is located in Los Angeles, CA. This is a literacy-focused program that not only collects books but also provides opportunities for children to give back to their communities.
So I feel a special affinity to Milk + Bookies™ since giving back is part of everything we do at Goods Giving Back.
The team at Milk + Bookies™ makes it easy for you to host a party with a variety of ideas, options, and detailed instructions. They completely take the guesswork out of party hosting so you can have fun with your friends and family as you collect books for kids in need. Another great way to engage the commuynity? Hold an event at your school that coincides with an on-site book fair. Everyone benefits!
Share The Goods: What Is An Innovative Literacy Program In Your Area?
While I appreciate the nationally recognized organizations focused on early education and literacy, I am committed to sharing more of these hyper-local nonprofits making a difference in their communities. They will continue to have a pulse on immediate needs and shift their programs accordingly.
I know that The Root, Promising Pages, and Milk + Bookies™ are only three of many innovative literacy programs in cities across the United States. So if you know of one I should add to my running list, please share in the comments below.
Enter The Back To School Giveaway
And because new books during the school year are always a good thing, why not enter for a chance to win $100 paypal cash by entering the back to school giveaway below!