We’re so pleased to share these monthly activity calendars created by RIF (Reading is FUNdamental). Each month’s calendar is filled with simple yet inspiring ideas for sparking curiosity and sharing learning with children. Some entries are connected to the significance of the day, others are pleasantly random. From the September calendar:
Monday, September 2nd (Labor Day): Read books about different kinds of jobs today
Tuesday, September 3rd: Help your child find items around the house that are shaped like a circle
The calendars for the entire year can be found at this link.
Nearly fifty years ago, Margaret McNamara, the wife of then Secretary of Defense Robert S. McNamara, was tutoring a group of children who were falling behind their classmates at the Washington D.C. school where she volunteered. When a child asked if he could take a book they were working with (a Jules Verne novel) home with him, McNamera agreed and was struck by his immediate surprise and pleasure. She began to realize that this boy owned no books of his own, nor did most of his classmates.
“Our main thrust is to lead children to the library. We feel if they choose and own some books, something will happen – they’ll be motivated to read. We don’t teach reading. We create the desire to read.” — Margaret McNamera
Using her influence in Washington and elsewhere, McNamera created Reading is FUNdamental, an organization committed to getting books into the hands of children. McNamera believed that owning books, even owning just one, would inspire children to seek out libraries, creating a cycle of reading. RIF’s influence is still felt in urban, rural, and suburban communities, anywhere where a family’s day-to-day financial worries eclipse their ability to offer books to their children.