POINT PLEASANT — The children who attended the Mason County Fair on Friday were able to go home with a new book or two or three.
Superintendent Jack Cullen, the Mason County Board of Education members, and the Mason County Fair Board members worked together to have a children’s literature giveaway during this year’s fair.
Georgia Thornton, administrative assistant to the superintendent of Mason County Schools, said Mason County Schools are able to purchase children’s literate with federal grants as to give the children in the community free books of their own. Thornton explained such grants are awarded to school districts to foster the love of reading in children and to build community relationships through the sharing of literature.
She commented this children’s literature giveaway, with 400 books being distributed to children of the Mason County community, was the kick-off for the children literacy campaign for the school year.
“Parents and grandparents alike helped children select books that were suitable for infants through sixth grade,” said Thornton.
Cullen added one of the best and most effective ways for children to become strong readers is if their parents read to them.
“If you want your child to get into Harvard, read to them every night,” said Cullen.
He explained studies have been done on the positive effects of parents reading to their children. In one study reported in the New York Times, some literacy experts believe when children are read aloud to by parents or teachers, even though they may be independent readers, the children can hear more complex words or stories they may not be apt to tackle themselves. Also, some literacy experts believe that by reading to children, the children can then develop a background knowledge in several sorts of topics as well as gaining exposure to sophisticated language.
Thornton shared the Mason County Fair’s children’s literature giveaway was such a great success that another event will be planned for the 2019 Mason County Fair.
Erin Perkins is a staff writer for Ohio Valley Publishing. Reach her at (304) 675-1333, extension 1992.