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Tennessee First Lady Continues Statewide Sweep to Promote Read20 Family Book Club in East Tennessee

Tuesday, August 14, 2012 | 11:00am

First Lady Crissy Haslam visits public libraries in Grainger and Hamblen counties and the Cocke County Fair to encourage READ20 Family Book Club participation
NASHVILLE – First Lady Crissy Haslam visited public libraries in Grainger and Hamblen counties and the Cocke County Fair today to promote her READ20 Family Book Club, a program to highlight the importance of parental engagement in children’s academic lives, encouraging Tennessee families to read together for at least 20 minutes each day.  During the library visits, Mrs. Haslam encouraged participation in the program by reading to children and donating copies of E.B. White’s Charlotte’s Web, the August Book of the Month, to the library. The First Lady promoted her READ20 Book Club at the Cocke County Fair by distributing copies of Charlotte’s Web to families at the fair.

“We have been traveling the state to highlight the importance of parental involvement in children’s education. Research says that the two most important things that parents can do are showing interest in homework and reading together as a family. If parents can read to their children for 20 minutes each day, students can be significantly more successful in school.”

Mrs. Haslam has participated in other events throughout the state this summer to encourage Tennessee families to participate in her book club, including visits to minor league baseball games and military bases. In August, Mrs. Haslam has been traveling to many of Tennessee’s rural communities to highlight the correlation between reading proficiency and academic success.  

“We have been focusing on outreach to rural communities this month, because literacy rates tend to be lower in rural areas,” Haslam said. “It is essential for all Tennessee students to be reading on grade level by the end of the third grade. Students are learning to read up until the end of third grade, and then they begin reading to learn. I hope that my book club provides another opportunity to increase family reading time and, ultimately, better academic success.”

For more information about the Read20 Family Book Club visit,, follow @Read20TN on Twitter, or visit your local public library.

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