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First lady promotes reading during West Tennessee visit

First lady promotes reading during West Tennessee visit

Posted: Wednesday, August 15, 2012 6:00 pm

The Messenger 08.15.12

Tennessee First Lady Crissy Haslam visited public libraries in Weakley, Henry and Carroll counties and the Benton County Fair last week to promote her READ20 Family Book Club.
During the Aug. 8 library visits, Mrs. Haslam encouraged participation in the program by reading to children and donating copies of E.B. White’s “Charlotte’s Web,” the August Book of the Month, to the libraries.
She concluded the day at the Benton County Fair, where she encouraged participation in her READ20 Family Book Club by distributing copies of “Charlotte’s Web” to families at the fair.
“Literacy is the most important skill that children need for academic success. When parents engage in their child’s education by reading together for at least 20 minutes each day, students will be significantly more successful in school,” she said.
Mrs. Haslam’s READ20 Family Book Club is an initiative to highlight the importance of parental engagement in children’s academic lives, encouraging Tennessee families to read together for at least 20 minutes each day. She has participated in other events throughout the state this summer to encourage Tennessee families to participate in her book club, including visits to minor league baseball games and military bases.
During the month of August, Mrs. Haslam will be traveling to several of Tennessee’s rural communities to highlight the importance of reading proficiency to academic success.
“Literacy rates tend to be lower in rural areas and we need all Tennessee students reading on grade level by the end of the third grade to help ensure the bright futures they deserve,” Mrs. Haslam said. “One of the best ways parents can partner with teachers is to increase the amount of time reading to children and I hope that my book club provides another opportunity to do so.”
For more information about the Read20 Family Book Club, visit or; follow @Read20TN on Twitter; or visit a library.

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