BALTIMORE, Md. (WMAR) — A grandmother in Northwest Baltimore is on a mission to help kids in her neighborhood learn how to read.
“As you read, it is the passport to your success. It is the key to open up the door to your future,” Beverly Goines said.
The Red Round Table Reading Camp started in Goines’ backyard after reading books with a few kids in her neighborhood.
“They came up to my door and asked me, one day, could they come and read a book, so I said, 'Sure.' So, we started reading and I discovered that the children in this community were not able to read and they were struggling a little bit with the reading,” Goines said.
According to the Literacy Network, 34% of children entering kindergarten lack some of the basic skills needed to learn how to read. In addition, 67% of fourth graders are reading below grade level.
“I don’t rush them because I already know they’re thinkers, but I just give them phonics and I try to help them to be able to understand that big word that they might, you know, have a time with or struggle with,” Goines said.
And to take it a step further, Goines even wrote and published books of her own for children ages 4-11 to help complete the mission.
“My books that I write are books for comprehension, also building vocabulary and also helping with their memorization skills,” Goines said.
Some of the books Goines wrote and published include "Quarterback from the River Bank," and "Megan , Jace & Brayden's Magical Masks."
Goines said some of the issues around literacy are the reason she started writing books. It’s also why she chose ages 4-11 as the target audience for the books she writes.
Goines, who retired from the federal government after 39 years, has five grandchildren and one great-grandchild.
“We know it takes a village to help them to read. They’re our future leaders. They’re going to be the next journalist, they’re going to be the next doctors and lawyers. They want to be good readers, they want to help other children read and as my turn, I would like to help other children as well,” Goines said.
This story was originally reported by Brittney Verner on wmar2news.com.