This article appeared in The Weekly Journal on April 17, 2020. Read the original piece.
A group of artists, athletes, educators, and public figures from Puerto Rico are lending their voices and talent for the enjoyment of children in the Flamboyán Foundation project “Todos a leer… en casa.”
Former MLB baseball player Carlos Delgado, writers Mayra Santos Febres and Georgina Lázaro León, vocalist Víctor Rivera from Atención Atención, tennis player Mónica Puig, actress Natalia Lugo, and many other public figures have joined educators such as teacher Ady Abreu, from the Roberto Clemente Elementary school, to collaborate in this initiative, which promotes the love of reading.
“Todos a leer… en casa” collaborators record themselves at home reading stories or informative books that children can use as educational and entertainment resources during the COVID-19 quarantine. Every day, Flamboyán Foundation shares on its YouTube channel and Facebook page a new dramatized video for families to enjoy together.
“At Flamboyán Foundation we are committed to ensuring that children in Puerto Rico have access to resources that enrich their reading and writing. Our goal is to help them read at their level when they finish third grade,” said Carlos Rodríguez, executive director of Fundación Flamboyán.
“Now, with the quarantine due to the pandemic, we cannot let reading efforts slide. That’s why we launched our project ‘Todos a leer… en casa’ to provide a fun and educational alternative for Puerto Rican families on the island and in the diaspora, and help them cultivate a passion for reading,” added Rodríguez.
The videos will serve as a virtual library of readings, digital resources that will help Puerto Rican parents in the island and in the diaspora to support their children’s education during this social distancing period and will remain available for future use. Access to the readings is completely free. The collection already includes a wide variety of texts, which collaborators have read and dramatized with great enthusiasm to capture the attention of children from kindergarten to third grade.
The Flamboyán Foundation is a nonprofit foundation that was established more than 10 years ago in Puerto Rico and in Washington, D.C. and works for an excellent education for each boy and girl, stressing the importance of reading. Among other efforts, they collaborate with public school teachers and administrators to support students impacted by inequality, provide workshops to teachers on best practices in teaching reading, share teaching resources, and have donated libraries to kindergarten through third grade classrooms. The project “Todos a leer… en casa” seeks to complement these initiatives during the quarantine.