Read with Me won the most prestigious and prominent international Reading Promotion award of IBBY-Asahi. The IBBY-Asahi Reading Promotion Award is given biennially to two groups or institutions whose outstanding activities are judged to be making a lasting contribution to reading promotion programs for children and young people. In 2016, Read with Me from Iran and Big Brother Mouse from Luang Prabang City, Laos were the two winning projects of this precious award among 11 nominees.
The winning projects were announced at the IBBY press conference at the Bologna Children’s Book Fair on Monday, 4 April 2016 and the presentation will be made in Auckland at the 35th IBBY World Congress in August 2016.
Understanding the important role of Book Reading and Reading Aloud in learning a language, now it is almost five years that the Institute for Research on the History of Children’s Literature (IRHCL) implements Read with Me project. Read with Me is a Reading Promotion project for children in low-income families, deprived children and children in crisis. The objective of this project is to make quality books accessible to this group of children and young adults who may not be able to access quality books in the routine of their lives. After years of research in the field of children’s history and culture and studies on the situation of children’s book in the society, IRHCL believes that book promotion among children and young adults, especially book reading can grow talents and mental abilities of next generations and change their lives. So this institute has suggested and implemented Read with Me project since August 2011 in different parts of Iran in order to bring the idea of “All children have the right to read quality books” into reality.
One of the Read with Me principles is to share books with children and young adults by Reading Aloud which is held along with conversations and book related creative art activities in order to have deeper effects on children. The goal of sharing books by this method is to help children benefit the joy and delight of reading and encourage their aesthetics and conceptual motivations. Based on this approach and objective, in addition of conscious selection of quality books and delivering them to children in deprived areas, Read with Me tries to empower teachers and tutors by holding different workshops about Reading Aloud and related activities.
One of the other principles of this project is to improve living values and skills through book reading, establishing small local, rural and school libraries with quality books, preparing reports and documenting activities and book reading sessions, and constant evaluation of the project based on qualitative and quantitative criteria.
Through this method and principles, Read with Me has been implemented in 13 provinces in Iran and it has achieved major successes in book promotion and making the children interested in books. During the 5 year of Read with Me implementation, about 24000 children have been covered by the project and benefited its advantages (Click here to know more about Read with Me covered centers and their activities).
Among the project’s successful implementation reasons the thing which could be mentioned is that this project has high flexibility and at the same time it persists on its principles and basics so it has achieved a wide range of methods and cover various children including: students in deprived areas, patient children, labour & Street Children, orphans or even the children of workers and employees in a factory.
This post is also available in: Persian