GRIFFITH | The Lake Area United Way announced it is introducing the 1-2-3 Read to Me Story Time, a literacy program at the Hammond Public Library for elementary school children.
The pilot program will connect students from kindergarten through third grade with volunteers to improve reading skills.
“This is such a crucial age for kids to develop and enhance strong literacy skills, so they’re prepared for high school and beyond,” said Lou Martinez, Lake Area United Way’s president. “We’re excited to pilot this new initiative to help children succeed in school.”
The goal is to improve reading skills, which will translate to better reading comprehension and improved academic performance, Martinez said. With lessons learned from this pilot, United Way hopes to grow the program in stages over the next few years.
Participating youngsters will sit in a semicircle and have stories read to them by volunteers from FedEx. They also will complete a craft activity together.
Other community groups are partnering in the project. Hammond Reads is donating free books to all participants. FedEx Ground in Hammond is recruiting employees to read books to children, and associates at the Target store in Munster assembled the literacy kits.
Clint Turpen, president of Hammond Reads’ board of directors, said children will be given a literacy kit that includes a copy of the read-aloud book and a guided activity for the child and their parents or caregivers to complete at home.
Story time is set for 1 to 2:30 p.m. Saturday at the Hammond Public Library, 564 State St.
Additional story hours are at the same time April 26 and May 31.
Registration is required. Call (219) 931-5100, ext. 330. Space is limited.