Young Authors Publishing sponsored the ‘Read With Me’ Youth Literacy Event at Home Depot Backyard to promote a love of literacy, partnering with Cxmmunity, an organization supporting minorities in e-sports, and Worldreader, a non-profit providing books to those in need.

“We’re a children’s and young adult book publisher based here in Atlanta, Georgia, and all of our books are actually written by young Black and Brown people,” said Leah Hernandez, the founder and CEO of Young Authors Publishing.

“If you don’t have time to sit down with your child and read 15 minutes, while you’re doing the laundry, while you’re making dinner, hand them your phone, pull up a book, have them tell you a story about the pictures,” SAID Bea Perdue, the senior director of Worldreader.

“Unfortunately, young people of color are not reading at the third grade level, and there are so many devastating stats that lead to that,” said Hernandez.

Data from Literacy Inc. shows children who can’t read by third grade are 13 times more likely not to graduate on time from high school.

“When children don’t see themselves reflected in books, then the desire and need isn’t going to be there, thus leading to our reading gaps that we experience today,” Hernandez said.

“Some people don’t know how to read, so you can teach them how to read,” said Iriana Lawton, 7.

“No matter your age or who you are or where you come from, you can always accomplish everything in life,” said Lauren Bell, 10.

Worldreader shared these tips for parents to encourage and support reading:

1. Reading aloud is a conversation. Pause and talk about the story with your child.
2. Read the same story to your child more than once.
3. Try re-inventing the end of a story together, it’s lots of fun.
4. Use different voices for characters to bring the story to life.
5. Children love bedtime stories. Read to your child before going to bed.

Source: CBS Atlanta

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