Follow the Reader: Armstrong helps young students promote literacy

(Nov. 14, 2013) With help from students in Armstrong's Student Georgia Association of Educators and Anne Katz, assistant professor in the department of childhood and exceptional student education, the Teens for Literacy group at East Broad Street School welcomed author Joan Kornblatt on Thursday, November 7, 2013, to speak with Kindergarten through third grade students about her book, I See Colors.

The Teens for Literacy program, sponsored by Armstrong's College of Education, showcases and celebrates the achievements of the middle school student leadership team at East Broad. The program provides a platform for students to motivate their peers and their communities regarding the importance and value of literacy. Teens for Literacy projects have included creation of book review blogs, production of school newspapers, a poetry initiative, and a school play.

Katz organized Thursday's event through the Live Oak Public Libraries.

“My goal was to provide the students of East Broad Street School with the opportunity to meet one of the featured authors at the Savannah Children's Book Festival and encourage them to attend with their families,” said Katz.

The Teens for Literacy student leaders at East Broad researched Kornblatt and emailed her several times to learn more about the inspiration and writing process for her book. The student leaders also prepared and distributed a brochure about the author and her book to familiarize the school audience with their visitor.

Armstrong's SGAE students donated autographed copies of I See Colors to each member of the Teens for Literacy program.

“We raised $100 to donate to the Teens for Literacy students,” said SGAE president Amber McKenzie. “Being involved with Teens for Literacy has opened my eyes to the fact that these students are our future.”

Several Armstrong SGAE members, including McKenzie, Lydia Hall, Linda Ready, Cody Wire, and the faculty advisor for the SGAE program at Armstrong, Linda Ann McCall, attended the author presentation.

“The joy from helping children in any aspect has really been enriching for me,” said Wire. “I hope that joy will help me to become a better teacher.”

The Teens for Literacy program will be represented on “Literacy Lane” with a booth at the Savannah Children's Book Festival on Saturday, November 16, in Forsyth Park.