Archive for June, 2010

Summer Reading at Library, and Books Donated

Sunday, June 27th, 2010
A June 24 New Haven Register article reports on a project related to Read to Grow, which has been featured in earlier posts to this blog:
“In an effort to help children develop a love of reading, R.J. Julia Book Sellers of Madison this week donated books to more than 16,000 kids in elementary and middle schools in New Haven. The main event took place at King-Robinson School, where about 500 students gathered for an assembly about reading. Four students read short essays they wrote about why they love reading and why it is so important…. A number of publishers donated 40,000 age-appropriate books. Originally, [R.J. Julia owner Roxanne] Coady had asked for about 20,000 books and the publishers doubled the amount. There were more than 20,000 extra books after the event. Boxes of them were left at the school and the excess will be available to librarians, teachers and day care centers…. More than 100 people volunteered time to organize and disperse books to the 38 schools. Coady in 1997 founded Read To Grow, a nonprofit organization that provides books for families of newborns in New Haven…. Her goal is to pique the kids’ interest by showing them that reading is ‘something cool’ and encouraging them to get involved with it.”
. . .
Here’s news of a summer reading challenge from the New Haven Public Library:

New Haven Reads, June 27 Fundraiser

Thursday, June 17th, 2010

New Haven Reads will hold a fund-raising event on Sunday, June 27.


Books by and about Geoffrey Canada

Friday, June 11th, 2010

Last year, an August 31 post to this blog cited a book by Paul Tough, Whatever It Takes, that features Geoffrey Canada and the Harlem Children’s Zone.

Paul Tough had visited New Haven in May 2009 to benefit All Our Kin. His book illuminates the promise, lessons, costs, and context of Geoffrey Canada’s ambitious social and educational venture.

Among the researchers Tough discusses is Joseph K. Torgesen, whose findings on the value of early intervention with struggling readers merit wider attention. Some information on Torgesen’s work appears here:

Years earlier, Canada himself wrote Fist Stick Knife Gun (1995), about his own youth and how it has shaped his efforts as an educator, nonprofit leader, and policy advocate.

Fist Stick Knife Gun includes the following passages in which Geoffrey Canada emphasizes the importance of reading in his own development, as well as the social pressures that led him — outside of school — to downplay his academic interests:

“I kept my rich school life and my love of books to myself. While others might know I was in the ‘smart’ class, they also knew that I didn’t act like it (p. 34)…. The year was 1964 and I was in the sixth grade at P.S. 99. I had learned my lessons well both in school and on the streets. I found school, though, to be the lesser challenge. I loved reading, and my mother, who read voraciously too, allowed me to have her novels after she finished them. My strong reading background meant an easy time of it in most of my classes. The streets were a different matter. I had fought enough to have gotten a reputation as one of the smart kids you’d better not mess with (p. 70).”

Nonprofit Leader Curtis Hill a Finalist for Award

Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010

Curtis Hill, founding volunteer executive director of Concepts for Adaptive Learning, is a finalist for an award recognizing those “who go above and beyond for their community.”

He is one of three finalists to represent the New York Yankees in Major League Baseball’s and People Magazine’s “All Stars Among Us” competition, with voting ending June 20:

To vote for Curtis Hill, click on the Yankees, even if you are a Red Sox or Mets fan. You may return to vote more than once.

Concepts for Adaptive Learning aims to use technology “to help prepare today’s children for tomorrow” through free, refurbished computer equipment and training for parents and teachers. For information on this nonprofit organization and its founder Curtis Hill, see:

“Editorial: Digital Divide Closes in New Haven”

“950 Families Close Digital Divide”

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