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Get ready for a Summer Reading Camp tailored for Latino children

A free online Summer Reading Camp enriches and improves literacy for Latino children 6 to 12 years old by providing materials written by Latino writers and…

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A number of years ago educators Monica Olivera and Viviana Hurtado noticed that summer reading lists generated by libraries and schools included few books with Latino protagonists or written by Latino authors. They formed Latinas for Latino Lit (L4LL) and since 2012 have offered a free Summer Reading Program for 4 to 18 year olds  specifically designed to reach, engage and improve literacy rates. After registration online, the program provides reading lists featuring bilingual children's titles, online reading logs, a pledge and certificates of achievement. Those with children under 4 can participate by reading to their children.

This year there is also a free Summer Reading Camp for children 6 to 12 years old, which is specifically designed to boost literacy skills such as reading comprehension and writing through 10 themed (Art, Music, Poetry, Food, Folklore, Sports, Summer, Familia, Nature, Heritage & Immigration) modules that include online reading passages, crafts and activities. In addition to access to the materials from the original Summer Reading Program, the Reading Camp includes original content by Latino authors and illustrators and a parent dashboard that allows them to track their children's progress during the summer. Materials are available in English and Spanish.

"L4LL believes in the critical role the power of identification — seeing yourself reflected in the world around you — plays in increasing literacy rates, educational outcomes, and improving lives," write the organizers. "This is why all of our programming features books written by and/or illustrated by Hispanics, including the L4LL Latino Children’s Summer Reading program."

Early registration for both programs opened May 1, and the program itself runs from June 1 through August 10.

The L4LL website includes downloadable resources, including a 2013 Día Blog Hop ebook with first-person accounts by Latino writers and illustrators centered on their own reading memories and experiences.

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