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COA Just Read Program

The foundation for learning how to read begins in infancy. Infants as young as six weeks old enjoy being read to, and research shows that this practice stimulates brain growth in infants. By two or three years of age, children begin to develop an awareness of printed letters and words. They also begin to notice the adults around them reading, writing and using printed words, which helps them develop a propensity for reading and writing. Toddlers and preschoolers are especially eager to learn and are influenced greatly from adults reading to and with them. Reading is one adventure you, as a parent, will not want to miss, because the benefits are far-reaching. Reading really does jumpstart a lifetime of learning.

Our Vision

The objective of COA's Just Read Program is that every child learns to read early and well, thereby reaching his or her full potential in school and life. That's why we:

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  • Support schools in assuring that students read on grade level.
  • Facilitate community involvement in helping young readers be successful.
  • Encourage and educate families about their role in raising a reader.
  • Promote the knowledge of printed letters and words and
    the relationship between sound and print.
  • Explore the meaning of a variety of words.
  • Explain how books work and feature a variety of writing styles.
  • Use books to define the world we live in.
  • Study the difference between written language and everyday conversation.
  • Show how reading decreases boredom and is entertaining.
  • Illustrate how reading improves concentration and focus.
  • Reveal how reading builds self-esteem.

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We recommend that you:

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  • Set aside a special time to logon to the computer with your child.
  • Encourage your child to help you enter the COA website and select our featured book of the month.
  • Introduce the book by reading the title, the author's name and the illustrator's name.
  • Talk about the cover illustrations.
  • Ask other family members to also read with your child.
  • Talk about the book when you are driving to school or going to the grocery store to help develop memory skills.
  • Ask your child questions about the book, such as: What was the book about? Did you enjoy the story?
    What did you like best about the story? Can you remember some of the words from the story?
  • Ask if your child can find other books at home on a similar topic.
  • Show interest in your child's responses about the story.
  • Pay attention to how your child responds.
  • Encourage your child to "pretend to read" as you flip through the pages of the story.
  • Point out letters in the story that might connect to your child, such as the first letter of his or her first name.
  • Ask your child to point to letters as you read the word; then read the word together.
  • Make the sounds of the initial letters with your child, and talk about letter-to-sound matches.
  • Read to your child frequently.
  • Encourage your child to draw a picture about the story, and then display it for everyone to see.

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