KIDS & FAMILY / Raising Readers
Get Your Kids ExcitedAbout Reading
WPSU offers programs, services, and resources to teach literacy skills to children ages 2 to 8.
WPSU is committed to help learning happen at home, at school, in child care, and in the community.
Raising Reader Mornings
WPSU has traveled to preschools and libraries to host "WPSU Raising Reader" mornings. The staff shares an episode from a PBS Raising Readers television program and leads activities related to the episode. Children are sent home with a packet which includes a WPSU coloring book, a Raising Readers activity book, stickers, a Raising Readers DVD, and a laminated tip sheet for parents about the importance of reading to their child.
Super Why Reading Camp
WPSU has hosted weeklong Super Why Reading Camps, designed to teach literacy skills to children about to enter kindergarten by focusing on the skills and methods used in the PBS program. Each day children watch the "The Three Little Pigs" episode and focus on a different character and his or her particular "super power." Special activities include a visit from a Super Why character and a celebration lunch at the end of the week. Nearly 60 children have attended previous camps.
WPSU coordinates Raising Readers events for families. Approximately 50 families attended a previous Family Night where children did activities related to a PBS television proram while parents attended a workshop on using television as a tool to teach literacy skills. Families also had the opportunity to meet a PBS character. Volunteers are typcially teachers from local child care centers, as well as WPSU staff members.
WPSU coordinates Raising Readers events for families. A previous Movie Night attracted almost 100 families and featured the "red carpet premiere" of "Martha Speaks." Families were also treated to an episode of "Word Girl." Several PBS characters attended the event, including Clifford, Curious George, Alpha Pig, Super Why, and a special visit from Martha. The Nittany Greyhounds attended, as well, to tie into the national partnership between "Martha Speaks" and animal rescue organizations. Each child left the event with a gift bag full of PBS KIDS Raising Readers giveaways, a copy of the book "Martha Speaks," and coupons from local businesses and non-profit organizations.
Festival of Ice
WPSU plans events to educate the community on the importance of teaching children to read. In November 2007, WPSU kicked off the Raising Readers initiative with the Festival of Ice, held during an annual street fair. The staff told the story of "The Nutcracker" and local child care centers were invited to attend. Children learned how to tell a story through dance, songs, and television shows. Children also received a visit from Clifford. The next evening, children had the opportunity to play and experiment with instruments. And on the final day, Super Why joined the kids. WPSU distributed the "Roadtrip To Reading" booklet to be stamped at their local library in order to receive a special "surprise" reward.
Miss Lori from the PBS KIDS morning block joined WPSU to promote the "Pennsylvania One Book, Every Young Child" campaign. Miss Lori read the 2008 selection, "Up, Down, and Around" and signed autographs afterwards. She also helped to distribute 700 copies of the book. Children who completed their "Roadtrip To Reading" booklets also enjoyed a special breakfast and storytime with Miss Lori earlier that morning.
Kids love to learn. The PBS KIDS Ready To Learn initiative uses the power of PBS programs, games, activities, tips, and addtional tools to get kids excited about reading.
The initiative is funded by the United States Department of Education and creates engaging telvision programs, exciting games, playful Web sites, and easy-to-use learning resources.
All Ready To Learn programs and materials incorporate the latest research about the most effective ways for kids to build reading skills, with special emphasis on the needs of children from low income families.