In 2014, GrowSmart began to celebrate NEA’s (National Education Association) ‘Read Across America Day’ with early childhood programs. Read Across America Day is a day to celebrate and foster a love of reading for children. GrowSmart celebrates every March, as a way to kick-off National Reading Month. In that first year, 34 sites were visited by 136 guest reader volunteers and every participating classroom received a copy of a free book. Now, every child in a participating center receives their own book! As the years have passed, we have strategically grown the event to incorporate more early childhood programs. This event visits private childcare centers, every Virginia Beach Head Start, every Virginia Beach City Public School pre-k classroom, Parks & Recreation Centers with early childhood programs, Seatack Elementary’s Kindergarten, Virginia Beach Public Library’s Early Literacy Outreach sites, and more.
Virginia Beach READS will continue this event for the City of Virginia Beach for years to come! This event is a piece in our local Campaign for Grade-Level Reading. For more information, contact Devin Cowhey, GrowSmart Development Specialist at 757-385-6434 or firstname.lastname@example.org.