Read to Me Project helps under-served children achieve kindergarten readiness and a lifetime of literacy by empowering school age brothers and sisters to read to their young siblings at home. We also raise public awareness about the literacy crisis and the need for language development and pre-reading skills during a child's first five years of life.
Kindergarten readiness is a major predictor of later academic success and the foundation for a lifetime of equitable opportunities. Read to Me Project systemically and remedially impacts underserved children in families where most parents read poorly or cannot read at all. The program was founded by a Salinas school speech and language specialist in 2011 after years of being asked by kindergarten teachers, “What’s wrong with these children?” What was wrong in most cases was the students’ lack of literacy. Covid has since exacerbated the situation. Educators are saying that the 2021/2022 school year was more challenging than prior years’ of Covid-interrupted learning conditions because students returned to the classroom further behind academically, socially, and emotionally. Read to Me Project reaches preschoolers in their homes to develop vocabulary, language and cognitive knowledge that prepares them for kindergarten and remedially helps struggling 4th- 6th grade students in low-performing classes. Readtomeproject.org.
Aldo [4-year-old] was always watching TV. When I started reading to him, he started identifying animals and tries to say the scientific names. He loves animals and books and singing with me. He loves being with me. Aldo is more adventurous now and is learning more. He’s thinking about new things he’s learned and wants to do them. If we read a book with a firefighter, he wants to be a firefighter. Animals and firefighters are his favorite right now. I want to be a role model for him, and he is protective of me. My mom and dad read to me before Aldo was born but now they are so busy. I want Aldo to have the experience that I had.
- Emma (anonymous)