COLORADO SPRINGS — KOAA is participating in a special campaign close to our hearts. "If You Give a Child a Book" literacy program focuses on under-served children between the grades of kindergarten to third grade.
Research shows when kids read every day, even for just a short amount of time, it leads to higher test scores and success later on in life.
Will Rogers Elementary School is also participating in this effort through its "Million Minute Reading Challenge," where they're encouraging the school's 300 students to read 20 minutes a day, with the goal of reaching one million minutes by May.
"We have noticed that our children are struggling to have good habits about daily reading, and also concerned about their reading proficiency," said Will Rogers Elementary School Principal Linda Slothower. "We know if children read 20 minutes every single day that the likelihood of them being a proficient reader is very good."
The event first kicked off last year and is one thing that has been directly impacted by the "If You Give a Child a Book" campaign. The campaign helped to provide five books for every student in the school.
Principal Slothower told News 5 that the challenge helps to get kids excited about reading and develop consistent reading habits both inside and outside the classroom.
"We want to get books in children's hands so they can log those minutes, and develop that love of reading," she said.
Fifth-grade student, Elder Ramirez, is one of the students participating in the challenge, and he told News 5 that this special event makes him excited to read.
"When school ends, I go walking to my house, I go to my room and read each 20 minutes," he said. "It's fun when we reach one million minutes, big party at one million minutes."
KOAA and the Scripps Howard Foundation recognize that an impoverished environment often leads to children receiving a lack of access to reading resources, a lower reading proficiency, and a struggle to adequately complete courses needed to transition into the world.
Since its inception, "If You Give a Child a Book" has distributed over 500,000 books, generating more than 90 million reading minutes. Every $5 you donate will result in one free book for a student hoping to have a bright future.
If you're interested in helping out the children of Southern Colorado, you can donate here.