Columbia Cares For Kids helps launch “March Reading Madness”
MAYOR BOB McDAVID HAS PROCLAIMED MARCH 4TH AS THE TIP-OFF FOR “MARCH READING MADNESS” MONTH WHEN COLUMBIA CARES FOR KIDS OFFERS FREE LITERACY WORKSHOPS AND READING ACTIVITIES FOR PARENTS, CHILDREN, AND PROFESSIONALS ACROSS CENTRAL MISSOURI. STUDENTS IN COLUMBIA AND JEFFERSON CITY SCHOOL DISTRICTS WILL BE COMPETING TO SEE WHICH DISTRICT WILL BE THE FIRST TO READ “ONE MILLION MINUTES IN MARCH” AND EARLY CHILDHOOD PROGRAMS WILL BE PARTICIPATING TOO!
Central Missouri will be the first community in the nation to launch a literacy initiative entitled “March Reading Madness” that coincides with the NCAA basketball tournament. As college players prepare to play basketball, thousands of children across mid-Missouri will be increasing their own skills by immersing themselves in books and parents will be reading to young children. Students in the Columbia and Jefferson City elementary school districts will be tracking their daily minutes on www.MarchReadingMadness.com, competing to see which district will be the first to read “One Million Minutes in March”. Anyone can track their own minutes online as well. Individually, children will be encouraged to take the “500 Minute Challenge” and will receive a Kids Coupon Book when they accomplish that milestone during the month of March and be entered into a “Reading Raffle” for great prizes, including a new Kindle Fire HD.
The month of events will kick off on Monday March 4th from 9:30-10:30 am with a press conference being held at the Columbia Boys & Girls Club Youth Development Center (located at 1200 N. 7th St.). Columbia Cares for Kids invites all media partners to participate in the press conference helping to make this distinctive opportunity a success for our community. At that time, Mayor Bob McDavid will formally proclaim March in Columbia as “March Reading Madness” month and the Columbia Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors will hold a ribbon-cutting ceremony. Representatives from the 18 agencies comprising Columbia Cares for Kids, a local coalition working to coordinate this campaign, will be available for questions.
There will be a variety of learning opportunities made available over the course of the first two weeks in March, including a “Young Readers Bedtime Book Bash” where parents and children are invited to come in their pajamas and listen to MU athletes and community professionals read children’s books in creative “stations”. This event will be held at the Missouri United Methodist Church in downtown Columbia on Thursday March 7th from 6:30-8:00 pm. Children will receive a free book from Scholastic’s generous donation of 15,000 books to launch this literacy initiative.
Other planned events include activities and readings at the library, workshops for childcare providers, and a language and literacy night for parents and young children.
For more information, please contact Dr. David Schramm, University of Missouri, at (573)884-1995, or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can visit www.MarchReadingMadness.com for additional information about Columbia Cares for Kids and an overview of all the events in March.