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Dec 02 2014 12:42pm    Comments: 0    Categories: Newsletters      Tags: reading  

There’s a new community project that is just being launched, but there are also high hopes that it will spark interest, enthusiasm, and support throughout the Batesburg-Leesville area.  This project is the Red Reading Rack Community Literacy Project.  The concept behind this project is to put books into the homes and hands of young children and their parents in order to encourage the development of pre-reading and reading skills, but especially to foster the love of books.  It is hopeful that several Red Reading Racks will be placed at various public places in order for parents/caregivers to take one or two books at a time.  The books are a gift and free of any obligation except the request that these books be read aloud to young children or for young readers to read independently.  There are incredibly large numbers of children who do not have access to suitable reading materials and are not exposed to written text before entering school.  This results in valuable developmental years being lost.  Ruth Cline, one of the first kindergarten teachers in Lexington District 3, always said, “Read, read, read to your child from the earliest possible moment.  When a child has experienced the joy of books, that child will learn to read.”


The project has been initiated by two former primary teachers who know first hand the importance of developing early literacy awareness.  It is being endorsed by several groups and was begun with a donation of books and a monetary gift from a former Batesburg-Leesville resident.  Additional books have been collected over the past few months.  The first bookcase was donated by the construction class at Batesburg-Leesville High School and will be located within the Food Closet at Wittenberg Lutheran Church.  Roughly 200 books were originally placed on the rack and will be available to those interested during the hours of the food closet operation which are Fridays and Saturdays from 9:00 am – 12:00 noon.  An additional rack will soon be available at Owen Drug in Batesburg.


Any individual or group who is interested in supporting this project can contact Debbie Mitchell 532-5944, Debbie Taylor 532-5358, or Mike Taylor at the Batesburg-Leesville Chamber of Commerce, phone (803) 532-4439.  Monetary donations, new or gently used books can also be taken there.  The project would like to expand to at least five or six other locations as bookshelves and books become available.  Any support is greatly appreciated as we all work together to provide optimal developmental growth for the children of Batesburg-Leesville.

 


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