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Under the auspices of the Illinois Reading Council, ILLINOIS READS will be a yearly statewide project to promote reading for all Illinois citizens. Beginning with read aloud books for babies, 6 books will be selected for each additional age band through adult readers. A variety of topics and themes will be chosen for each age band. The work of Illinois authors will be especially highlighted. There will be a mix of hard covers and paperbacks, with several Spanish-language titles and Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM)-related books and the work of Illinois authors will be especially highlighted.
Working with the Illinois State Library, State Librarian, Jesse White, is the Honorary Chair. The Illinois Reads will focus on reading at home and in the classroom. Illinois Reads will also emphasize summer reading as a way to not only bring the family closer together but also to combat what is known as “summer learning loss” in children. Residents from Rockford to Carbondale and from Quincy to Danville will be able to partake in Family Literacy Nights sponsored by their local IRC chapters.
As part of Illinois Reads, which will culminate in a statewide celebration of literacy during Secretary White’s Family Reading Night in November, classrooms, public and school libraries, community groups, and community bookstores throughout the state will feature the titles of 36 books in six separate age groupings.