When I was in college studying English Literature, I started volunteering for a local center called Literacy Unlimited. After a thorough training, I was certified to help adults in their journey to learn how to read. I was paired up with a man named Percival. He was an older man, with a rough exterior. He worked as a truck driver, and he had started coming to the center on his own. After some assessments and discussions, we began working together. When he came to the center to learn how to read, it was difficult for him, but he was determined to work at it.He remembered being introduced to a book when he was young called the Hound of Baskervilles (by Arthur Conan Doyle). He had such a sense of enthusiasm when he spoke about it. And when our time was finished together, he gifted me with the book as a memento.
Why am I telling you this? Because my friend Percival represented just one of the now 793 million people in the world that are illiterate. Can you imagine not being able to read or write? The very ability that you have right now reading this is your worldly right. Today is World Read Aloud Day, an awareness day advocating for literacy as a right that belongs to all people. On this day, I remember fondly my time at Literacy Unlimited and hope that I helped my friend in his journey to literacy.
As a mama, I read to my little ones every day, sometimes, (often times) more than once a day. They absolutely love books and I love reading to them. To see their eyes widen with curiosity when they are discovering or imagining is so amazing. And I know that spending time with them now each day, reading aloud, will lead them to a lifetime of reading and education.
So how will you celebrate World Read Aloud Day today? There are so many things you can do to encourage your children to become strong readers and educate them on the importance of literacy. Reading a book to them will be a wonderful way to start! Other things you can do:
- Check your local library or bookstore for special events today in celebration of World Read Aloud Day.
- Create your own celebration by inviting your child’s friends and mamas over for a play date filled with favourite books. Have each mama read one book aloud.
- Have your older children read aloud to your younger children.
- Visit a senior residence to volunteer your time reading aloud to someone who cannot.
- Spread the word by sending out this post through Twitter, Facebook and any other social media networks you belong to.
Another thing that World Read Aloud Day is encouraging is to keep track of the minutes you read aloud today. The goal is to reach 793 million minutes of reading aloud globally to represent the 793 million people in the world who are illiterate. Visit www.litworld.orgfor more suggestions and information. You can even get a certificate for your particiaption today!
I hope you can join in and celebrate this day with your family, as well as spread awareness about the importance of literacy.
Of the twelve classic fairy tales, right now their favourite is Thumbelina. Happy Read Aloud Day everyone!