Monday, March 6, 2017

Diane returns to Hong Kong by popular demand to work with Bring Me A Book Foundation.

The vision of BMAB is a Hong Kong in which every child is read to, strengthening family and community bonds, and creating a love of learning, taps into how children become lifelong readers. 

Parental involvement is essential to a child’s success in school. When children start reading independently, parents need to become more, not less, involved. The question becomes what type of involvement is helpful? Diane’s work is predicated on the belief that a book only comes to life when it is spoken about. She coined the phrase, Conversational Reading which is a simple 3 steps: Read A book. Ask a question. Start a Conversation. Her workshops and presentations in Hong Kong teach parents and teachers the strategies and tools in the art of Conversational Reading. Reading aloud is a skill. Conversational Reading is an art.

Some guidelines on parental involvement
• DO NOT stop reading to children once they learn to read on their own!
• Reading aloud does not automatically lead to literacy. The real link lies in the verbal interaction that occurs between adult and child during story reading.
• Children who talk about stories better understand what they read.
• Children who understand a story become more confident readers. Children need confidence to be good readers.
• Children who come to school with well-developed skills in “taking meaning from books” are clearly at an advantage. Someone in the home read to the children, answered their questions, and encouraged them to read and write.

Questions to ponder:
~ Who helps your child choose the books they read?
~ Do you read some of the books your child reads?
~ Do you talk about the story once the books are finished?
~ Is your child reading books that are not school assignments?

A poem to share
When I was little, mom would read to me in bed.
I’d lie under the covers with my eyes closed
And the sound of her voice would make me feel safe and sleepy at the same time.
Sometimes, even with the good stories, I’d fall asleep before the end.
Now I’m bigger and I can read by myself but still, every once in a while, when I’m feeling sad or something,
I’ll ask Mom and she’ll come in and sit on the edge of the bed
and touch my head
And read to me again.

(Poet unknown)

I am proud to be part of the work BMAB does—
Over the past 10 years, Bring Me a Book Hong Kong has installed 370 libraries, serving over 150,000 children in the low-income communities.  Their qualified trainers run regular trainings each month and have empowered 30,000 parents and teachers to read with children most effectively