Imagine children without a single book to call their own.
Imagine no one reading to a child.
Imagine parents unable to read to a child
Reality is today childhood literacy is in crisis.
Reality is that three out of four, fourth graders, fail to read at grade level.
Reality by reinforcing a child’s sense of self-worth, confidence, and exposing them to stories about children who look like them, share similar families, encourages them to develop the love of reading.
As President of Reading Is Fundamental of Southern California, these are the statistics that we share with our mission.
For those of us who grew up with Dick and Jane, reflect back upon a society that unintentionally set children and families up for failure to succeed. Whether it was Mom dressed in her “uniform” dress for the day, Caucasian children dressed so “fancy” playing at home with their toys and pets, and Dad coming in wearing a suit, a tie, and of course, a hat. What kind of home was depicted here? Growing up in that time, there was no way to relate to that, seeing my parents in that scenario, especially coming from a divorced family, nor my friends’ families for that matter.
In the midst of the history of books for children, none of them illustrated how the majority of people were living and working. Schools continued rote memorization of facts, basics of the “3 R’s,” and what ever else might have fallen in-between.
To this day, I do not know how I decided on the “…road less traveled,” as Robert Frost, so eloquently wrote about, but I do feel very fortunate to have headed in that direction by serendipity…
With many years behind me, marriage, children, teaching for 16 years and a Master’s Degree in Education, of course volunteering, my eyes are wide open to the reality of the world around us.
Change is slow and once one-person dives into the deep water, there are opportunities to create change for the better.
Images of the many children I taught over the years, the smiles, the struggles, and the desires I experienced made me acutely aware of my goals for children and their parents for reading books that I would begin to write.
Over the past ten years since I began to write, my evolution has been one of letting kids be kids, learn how to grow “into their own skins,” look at others with a sense of community, compassion, and empathy. Portray experiences that children have as they learn how to interact with others especially through play.
Three Wishes Publishing Company rooted into a philosophy:
- Foster Literacy
- Promote the love of reading
- Develop imagination
- Create exciting, enriching, and engaging stories for children
- Encourage socialization through discussions and sharing experience through reading
- Stimulate thinking and communication
- Provided positive reading experiences from a variety of stores to help children to become inspired and life-long readers
Stories that help to promote socialization, creativity, and conversation promote a dialogue between the reader, who is reading to them, and most importantly a sense of connection. Stories, characters, settings, and using books as tools to understand each other in a positive way leads to feelings of success, acceptance, and empathy.
The next time you look for a book, do it with your child, flip through pages, look at pictures, ask questions, and let your child lead you to a decision. Keep in mind when a child reads a book a 5 years and then again at 7 years, there are newly found connections in the same story. The story grows with the child.
Providing multicultural experiences for all children has become a necessity in our world today. Sharing cultural and religious holidays, traditional and non-traditional lifestyles, and interaction of families and friends provide valuable platforms as children grow and develop. We as authors need to build this platform to develop harmony and understanding. Children need a fresh starting place, stories we write for them at an early age that keep them free, open to differences and similarities of others, and above all respect for each other.
Bio: Alva Sachs, award-winning children’s author, earned her Bachelor’s Degree at the University of Illinois and her Master’s of Education from Northern Illinois University. She has more than sixteen years of teaching experience. Her days in the classroom provided the inspiration for becoming a children’s writer and founder of Three Wishes Publishing Company. She serves as President of Reading Is Fundamental for Southern California.
Visit Alva at www.alvasachs.com