The Merits of Reading Real Books to Your Children

How do we think about a distinct role for paper, for “book-books” in children’s lives? My own pediatric cause is literacy promotion for young children. I am the national medical director of the program Reach Out and Read, which follows a model of talking with the parents of babies, toddlers and preschoolers about the importance of reading aloud, and giving away a developmentally appropriate children’s book at every checkup.

We are talking about very young children here, and we begin by giving out board books which are designed to be chewed and drooled on by babies who are still exploring the world orally, or thrown down (repeatedly) off the high chair by young children who are just figuring out object permanence and experimenting with ways to train their parents to fetch and retrieve. But the most essential attribute of those board books, beyond their durability, is that they pull in the parent, not only to pick them up, but to ask and answer questions, name the pictures, make the animal noises.

NY Times

Vroom Delivers Tips, Community Playbook, and Apps for Parents and Caregivers

Vroom now has a community playbook available for free. From a post on the Grade-Level Reading Campaign’s Huddle site:

Vroom turns shared moments into brain building moments. Whether it’s mealtime, bathtime, or anytime in between, there are always ways to nurture our children’s growing minds.

Vroom was developed by a group of dedicated scientists, community leaders, and trusted brands, with input from community organizations and families like yours. Together, we’re providing parents and caregivers with ways to boost early learning in fun and friendly ways.

Vroom was designed to be owned, adopted, and driven by others, and we’re working hard to make this a reality. At this stage in the development of Vroom, we have completed our pilot project in the Seattle area, and as a result we’ve published a Vroom Playbook as a “how to” for communities, organizations, and individuals interested in activating Vroom. Our Playbook, printable tips, and other materials are freely available for download from the “Tools and Activities” section of our website at For your convenience, here is a direct link to those materials, available in English and in Spanish.