July 10, 2019

Summer is always a busy time here at RAR National!  We are gearing up for an exciting line-up of summer and fall events, including Coordinator Training, Webinars, the Annual Affiliate Check-In and the much-loved National Coordinator Institute!  This edition also features highlights from the “RAR Bookshelf,” promising practices from some of our very own RAR Affiliates and tips for caring for your Red Book Bags! 

Happy Book Cuddling,  

Your Raising A Reader National Office Team 

Affiliate Spotlight

Longfellow School in Pasadena, California

This has been a most unusual year at the Longfellow Elementary School Library in Pasadena, CA.  After hosting their kick-off RAR event for parents in the Fall, Coordinator Eileen Roth had to go on medical leave which included surgery and a long recovery.  Luckily, her husband stepped up and offered to “keep RAR going.”  Roth added, “he believes in the program as much as I do.” It didn’t hurt that Mr. Roth is a retired librarian.

Each week, Mr. Roth and another volunteer received the Red Book Bags from each classroom, checked the bags and returned them for the next rotation. “He didn’t miss a beat and it was impressive!”

At the end of May, the Blue Library Bags were prepared and included a letter thanking parents for helping with the program and saluting the students for their participation. Another tradition that wasn’t lost, each RAR student received a new book inside their Blue Library Bag. A gift from Mrs. Roth.

Mrs. Roth sends out a special Thank You to Ms. Ingber who presided over a beautiful end of the year event and to her RAR volunteers, particularly her husband. Words cannot express her gratitude for all their efforts keeping the Red Book Bags rotating.

This story was relayed to RAR by Eileen Roth (pictured). Her story may have a familiar ring to many of our dedicated Coordinators and Implementers who’ve faced health issues recently yet stayed dedicated to giving children the gift of literacy. 

Please submit your great stories that illustrate the impact you are making in your community. Please go to our website for more information and to submit your Great Story today! 

From the RAR Bookshelf

Each month Raising A Reader will feature one of the books in our collection to highlight what we offer in various genres such as STEM. This month’s feature is Counting on Katherine: How Katherine Johnson Saved Apollo 13 by Helaine Becker.

You may know Katherine Johnson from history, or from the 2016 movie release of Hidden Figures, but what about the kids within your sphere of influence? Do they know about Katherine’s real life, heroic actions of breaking molds that existed in the realms of gender, race, and STEM? In Counting of Katherine: How Katherine Johnson Saved Apollo 13, you’ll follow young Katherine as she grows in her love for math and learning, to navigating the necessary steps to follow her dreams as an adult. With Katherine’s bravery and tenacity felt on every page, this is a story that you’ll want the children in your care to experience.  

Get this story and more in our 2019 Kinder African American Refresher.  

Save The Date!

2019 National Institute: 20 Years of Changing Children’s Lives Through Literacy  

It’s Coming! The 2019 National Coordinator Institute in Redwood City, CA, is happening this November! With speakers, panels, and networking that you can’t afford to miss!

Date: November 6-7, 2019
Theme: 20 Years of Changing Children’s Lives Through Literacy 
Registration Fee: $100
Location:   Sobrato Center for Nonprofits – Redwood Shores Shoreway Conference Room
                   330 Twin Dolphin Drive, Suite 147 | Redwood City, California 94065

Stay tuned for upcoming registration details.

Programs Update

Raising A Reader Welcomes New Affiliates 

Since we haven’t run this segment in a while, we want to publicly welcome to our Network the new Affiliates who have begun implementing Raising A Reader this year. Visit their websites to check out their programs. 

A World of Friends School
Adelante Mujeres
Allegany Public Schools
Antioch Unified School District 
Bellaire Preschool
Caroline County Public Schools
Coweta Accountability Court
Creighton Family Resource Center
Easter Seals of DC/MD/VA – Head Start Program 
Greensboro Housing Authority
Integrated Community
KenCrest Services
Mandan Public Schools
Maria L. Varisco Rogers Charter
Minot Public Schools
Myerstown Community Library
Oheb Shalom’s Learning Ladder
OUSD – Markham Elementary School
Paradise Valley USD
Peekskill City Schools
Spartanburg Co. School District 6
Tehama County Office of Education
United Way of Greater Atlanta 

Finds Toddlers Prefer Print Books Over Tablets 

From the journal Pediatrics, “despite the popularity of electronic devices and e-books, a recent study shows, for toddlers, nothing beats an old-fashioned print book. During the study, when parents read print books to children, researchers observed more question and answering than when the children were read to with an electronic book, and more discussions beyond the story on the pages. When toddlers were read stories on electronic books or tablets, the parent-child interaction was mostly about how to use the technology, and not about the actual story.”  Watch the video provided by the Cleveland Clinic here. 


National Coordinator Training Dates  

Have you signed up yet? In the next three months, Raising A Reader offers three opportunities for Coordinators to receive in-person training. For new Coordinators, or those who desire a refresher, we have three options: 

July 30-31, 2019  
Sobrato Center for Nonprofits
330 Twin Dolphin Drive, Redwood City, California
Register here 

August 6-7, 2019  
North Carolina Partnership for Children
1100 Wake Forest Road Raleigh, North Carolina
Register here 

September 10-11, 2019 
Raising A Reader East Coast Office
810 Cromwell Park, Suite K, Glen Burnie, Maryland
Register here 

If you can’t make these dates, here are two more options: 

  • Our three-hour Online Coordinator training webinar will provide you with a condensed version of our Coordinator Training. This webinar is not meant to replace our in-person training but provides an alternative so you can start implementing without delay.  Online Coordinator Training Webinar 
  • If you plan to attend the 2019 National Institute in November, there will be a one-day intensive Coordinator Training, Tuesday, November 5, Register here. 

For more information, contact us at rarinquiry@raisingareader.org.

Business Development Webinar

Engaging Military Families through Early Childhood Literacy Efforts 

Friday | July 12 | 11:00 am – 12:00 noon EDT 

Raising A Reader salutes our Military Families! This one-hour FREE webinar will provide a general overview of the RAR program, how the model works, its alignment with DOD standards, and the steps involved in bringing Raising A Reader to your military installation/CDC.

Register here

If you currently serve military families, or know of other organizations that do, we encourage you to attend and to share registration details for this informative webinar! 

Business Behind the Books

June Sales Promotions means RAR Riches for Affiliates As part of our 20th Anniversary celebration, and as a way to say “thank you” to Affiliates who purchased materials during the month of June, we gave away more than 2,700 Cricket Media booklets/magazines (retail value of $18,765) as well as $11,425 in RAR Riches that can be used to purchase RAR materials up through September 30, 2019. We will be mailing RAR Riches coupons, and instructions on how to redeem them, in the upcoming week. So, if you placed orders during June for $2,000 or more, keep an eye on your mailbox!

Year-End Inventory Make sure you’re ready to start the new school year with complete sets.  Our handy inventory tool (Download it herecan be used at the end of the year to assess what you need to order to make sure your bags are complete and ready to rotate on the first day 

Red Bag Care In Case You Missed It: Raising A Reader’s Updated Instructions to Preserve Red Bags

Canvas Bags (purchased before 2017)  
If you have Red Bags made out of canvas, they can be placed in washing machines on the “Gentle” cycle in cold water using non-bleach detergent. Remember: Air Dry Only!

Vinyl Bags (purchased since 2017)  
For our newer bags purchased since 2017 (these bags are the heavier vinyl-like material), Machine washing will damage the bag and is NOT recommended. Wash gently by hand using mild soap or laundry detergent. You may also be able to wipe bags down using a Lysol or Baby Wipe to remove debris or stains. If there is still an odor attached to the bag (i.e., cigarette smoke) try using a dryer sheet or Febreze spray. If you find something that works, please let us know! These bags are bed-bug resistant unlike the canvas bags. 
If You Need New Red Bags, Here’s How to Order  
Are your Red Book Bags well-loved and need to be replaced? For $7 each, Red Book Bags with tags can be ordered through our office. Call 650.489.0550 or email us at rarinquiry@raisingareader.org for help with a quote and placing an order as they cannot be ordered through our website.


In Person Coordinator Training

Online Coordinator Training


September 26
Fall Webinar

November 21
Winter Webinar

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