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Entertainment & Lifestyle

Children Read Across America on special day

3/21/2013 - South Side Leader
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By Staff Writer

Photos courtesy of Akron Children’s Hospital
GREEN — Going to the doctor for a check-up was a special experience for sick and healthy children alike at Akron Children’s Hospital Pediatrics offices March 1.

That day, children received a new book to keep and enjoyed a special story time with librarians from the Akron-Summit County Public Library system in honor of Read Across America Day, which celebrates the birthday of children’s author Dr. Seuss.

According to Karen Carbaugh, the hospital’s Reach Out and Read early literacy program coordinator, about 1,900 children received a book that day.

Among those was 2-year-old Eliza McKinney, of Green, shown at bottom right while at the Green office learning about zebras and giraffes from Elaine Melvin, a children’s librarian at the Portage Lakes Branch Library.

Eleven-month-old Cooper King and his father, Jeff, of New Franklin, are pictured at top right also enjoying a story with Melvin that day.

“Today and every other day, Akron Children’s and our friends at the library share a common goal — to help parents and their children develop a love of books and reading, thus enhancing the development of early literacy skills,” said Carbaugh. “More than one third of children enter kindergarten unprepared with basic language skills needed to learn to read.”

Akron Children’s Reach Out and Read early literacy program distributes more than 40,000 new books each year at 20 primary care locations in Northeast Ohio to children ages 6 months to 5 years, according to Carbaugh. The program is funded by outside sources, with major contributions from the Kohl’s Cares for Kids program, she said.

To donate new and gently used children’s books or to volunteer to read, call 330-543-8068.

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