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The impact of one trip to the public library: Making books available may be the best incentive for reading.

Susan Notes: While our current ed reformers argue about how many kids can dance to the tune of the Business Roundtable, Achieve, Inc., US Department of Education, and their allies, this short paper offers a simple idea for getting kids to read: Give them ready access to books of their choice.


Monthly trips to a public library provided access to books to inner-city second and third graders who had limited access to books at home and at school. Each child allowed to take out ten books for voluntary reading on each library visit, which suddenly produced a substantial classroom library. According to surveys done after the first visit, nearly all parents reported more interest in children's reading and improvement in reading. About half of the children had never visited a public library before, and 67% asked their parents to them to the library again.

— Francisco Ramos and Stephen Krashen
The Reading Teacher


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