Millions of children and adults read the same book and at the same time as part of the 'Jumpstart' program

Preschool students are motivated to read worldwide

LAPD agent Alma Martínez reads to students at Hoover Intergenerational Care. (Aurelia Ventura / The Opinion)

Aurelia Ventura / Impremedia / La Opinion

While the officer Alma Martínez and Dr. Rami Abdou M.D. They read the book “Gracias Omu”, in English and Spanish, a group of children listened very carefully.

"What is a stew?" The little ones asked the invited readers.

“Something you eat!” (Something you eat!), Replied one of the little preschool students, while imagining the delicious stew that Omu, the main character in the story had cooked.

The pair of readers was part of a group of volunteers who arrived Thursday at the Hoover Intergenerational Care preschool in the University Park area of ​​Los Angeles to promote bilingual reading.

However, reading to small students did not happen only on that campus, since the school is part of Jumpstart, a reading program that has been carried out for 14 consecutive years.

Dr. Rami Abdon participates in the ‘Jumpstart’ program that takes place for 14 consecutive years worldwide. (Aurelia Ventura / The Opinion)

On this occasion, the program brought together millions of adults and children from around the world to read the same book on the same day and draw attention to the importance of early literacy through Read for the Record. This is the largest shared reading experience in the world.

Jumpstart provides language, literacy and socio-emotional programs for preschoolers and in low-income communities; In addition, it promotes early learning and quality for all.

Charlie Arreola, spokesperson for Jumpstart, He said that this program primarily serves communities that do not receive enough help in reading.

"We know that if you start early education with students they will be more successful in the future," said Arreola.

Preschool teacher Ana Cortez said that when children receive adults as a sight to read books they enjoy a lot.

“Children have a world of imagination and although they can't read, they can see the letters and learn,” said Cortez, whose school is adjacent to the University of Southern California (USC) campus.

Agent Martínez, from the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), said it is the first time she has volunteered for the annual event and enjoys it very much.

"The sergeant of the Southwest Division sent us an email and it caught my attention," the 29-year-old said. "I like children and reading them is very important."

During the last years, Jumpstart has achieved that more than two million people participate annually and to date more than 20 million children and adults have participated through the Read for the Record program.

Ms. Cortez said that in that preschool approximately 98% of students are of Latin origin, which is why they promote bilingual reading.

“We tell parents to go to their libraries to get books so that their children can love reading,” said Cortez.

School staff said that preschoolers are very fortunate on the campus, since apart from the annual reading with guests they receive, USC students also arrive twice a week to read and play.

Jamie Schlegel, 19, said she has participated since last year and enjoys working with children.

"At the beginning they are very shy but later when time goes by they feel more comfortable," Schlegel said.

Of the 1,500 children who Jumpstart Serves annually in Los Angeles County, 78% of them are Latino and 40% of children come from Spanish-speaking homes.

To learn more about the program visit:


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here