Did you know that May is the National Get Caught Reading Month? In 1999 the Association of American Publishers founded the Get Caught Reading campaign.
Now it is managed by the Every Child a Reader non-profit organization and its purpose is to help educators and librarians inspire a love of reading across America.
Now, I don't think any of our readership needs any help developing a love of reading, but surprisingly, literacy in America is still a work in progress in many ways. Here are a couple of interesting stats:
54% of U.S. adults 16–74 years old read below the equivalent of a sixth-grade level
36 million American adults can’t read better than an average third-grader.
Those facts alone really surprised me when I read them. Growing up in a home filled with books, a mother who read us bedtime stories, and a father who always had his latest war history novel on his bedside table, I always assumed that everyone enjoyed reading to at least some degree. But for many, this healthy and life-changing skill is not ingrained or developed in their life and is perpetuating a variety of problems.
One of the best things we can do to help improve functional literacy and a love of reading in our communities is to instill a love of reading in the next generation-- kids! We can actively get involved with reading to kids, volunteering and supporting our local libraries and elementary school reading programs, and we can also be an example of loving reading ourselves!
Let's make sure we "get caught" reading this month, and help positively spread the joys of reading in our homes and communities.
Here's a great list of tips to get caught reading all month long from NationalDayCalender.com:
Tuck magazines into your bag. Anytime you have some free time you will have something to read.
Place books for all ages in the car. Everyone will have something to read. Older children can read to those who haven’t mastered the skill.
Unplug for the month. Then stop by the library and pick out the latest bestseller or classic on your reading list.
Charge up the digital reader’s battery and load it up. Many classics have been made available for a small fee or no cost.
Get caught reading to children. Find a snug spot and create a routine that carries on throughout the year.
Include a book in every room in the house.
Encourage reading during stressful times as a way to distract the mind away from worries and to refocus.
Read outdoors in a park after a walk.
**Use #GetCaughtReadingMonth to share on social media.