April 06, 2020
Over 1.5 billion kids are currently out of school due to COVID-19 related school closures. So how do parents and educators ensure the skill and habit of reading thrives during a time of distance learning?
Room to Read’s online platform, Literacy Cloud, supported by a US$2.2 million Google.org grant, offers simple solutions that kids and adults will love.
1. Access to free digital storybooks from around the world. The world is collectively facing a health crisis and there is no better time than now to expose early readers to different cultures and experiences as well as globally diverse voices. Room to Read’s library of storybooks, available free of charge, instills empathy, kindness and understanding in the next generation of leaders and global citizens. With hundreds of titles to choose from in a variety of languages, children can learn about the life of a child on the other side of the globe and reflect on emotions similar to their own.
2. Celebrity Video Read-Alouds. With libraries and bookstores shuttered, Room to Read Read-Alouds bring story time into your home. Our original children’s books are narrated and brought to life by some of your children’s favorite actors, including Callan Farris of The Disney Channel’s “Gabby Duran and the Unsittables,” Isla Farris of “Star Wars: The Mandalorian” and Elias Harger of “Fuller House.” Additional celebrity readers include Dilshad Vadsaria of “Second Chance,” and prominent business leaders Samantha Barry, Glamour Editor-in-Chief, and Vicky Tsai, founder of Tatcha. New read-alouds will be released each week throughout the month of April on Room to Read’s YouTube channel and on Literacy Cloud.
3. Customized Reading Lists. Literacy Cloud’s library offers books for various skill levels, with each title clearly designated by a color-coded reading level, ranging from simple sentences to longer stories for more advanced readers. Users can choose from a reading list curated by Room to Read on themes including adventure stories, folktales or self-exploration. Alternatively, children can build their own reading list based on their reading level or a topic of their choosing such as natural sciences. Parents and teachers can also build a reading list weekly and encourage independent reading time as part of your student’s distance learning routine.
To learn more about how Room to Read is facilitating learning during COVID-19, click here.