Sharp Advice: Red Raider Reader - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

6/3/07

Sharp Advice: Red Raider Reader

I may be partial to basketball, but another really good activity inside or outside is curling up with a good book. And you don't have to do that by yourself. You can read to a child.  

That's the message from the Department of Pediatrics at the Texas Tech Health Sciences Center where children's books are an important prescription. It's called the Red Raider Reader program, and it means that every child who comes in for a well-check goes home with a brand new book that is age appropriate for their development.

Ironically, the program started about 10 years ago in Boston when some pediatricians noticed that the children's books in the lobby were disappearing. Instead of just replacing them, they decided to encourage reading by making books a personal gift to each patient.

"So this way. they get one of their own and it's brand new and the doctor puts the child's name in it. So it's specifically to help encourage parents to read to the child at an early age," says Kim Hodges, Director of the Red Raider Reader program. 

And she says not only do the kids love getting this special gift, but it promotes quality time with parents reading to kids. It can make a difference in their education later by helping them learn to love books long before they go to school.

Some grant money is available to help pay for these books, but any donations are appreciated because that just means we can buy more books for our little Red Raider Readers. 

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