TRC Read to Kids

Welcome to The Reading Connection’s blog, where you’ll find the best guidance on reading aloud to kids. Whether you are a TRC Read-Aloud volunteer, parent or student, the book themes and crafts ideas, child development guidelines and recommended websites will expand your world. For 25 years, The Reading Connection has worked to improve the lives of at-risk kids by linking the magic of reading to fun experiences that inspire a passion for learning. Visit our website at

Monday, November 12, 2012

TRC’s Four Programs

The Reading Connection (TRC) is composed of four programs, all based in literacy development. Studies show that children who grow up with books in their homes and are read to regularly are much more likely to succeed academically in the future. Book choice and ownership, access to books and the availability of reading role models are among the best ways to promote literacy development, both in young children who have not started to read and in older, developing readers. Each year, TRC reaches more than 1,500 children and families and distributes more than 11,500 new books throughout the Washington metropolitan area. Our partners represent a mix of homeless shelters, transitional housing, affordable housing apartments, domestic violence safe houses and family service providers.

The Read-Aloud Program
The goal of the Read-Aloud is to get children to spend more time reading and talking about books so that they begin to see themselves as readers. Read-Alouds are held weekly at 11 different shelters, transitional housing and affordable housing communities. Teams of volunteers spend an hour reading with kids and engaging them in conversation and related activities. At the end of each Read-Aloud, children choose a new book to add to their personal library.  

Book Club
The Book Club extends reading motivation to traditionally hard-to-reach families who are clients of social service agencies. Once enrolled in the Book Club, families receive free, new books by mail each month, along with suggestions to encourage reading in the home. The Book Club offers its materials in English and Spanish.

Reading Families Workshops
Reading Families Workshops, offered to parents of children in the Read-Aloud Program and the Book Club, are designed to increase parents’ confidence in sharing books with their children. TRC staff and volunteers model book-sharing techniques and parents can observe how their children respond to the books. At the end of each workshop, parents choose new books for their children. Workshops are conducted in Spanish, English and Spanish-English bilingual sessions.

Literacy Advocates Training
At Literacy Advocates Trainings, Family Support Workers (FSWs) and partner staff learn to look for and reinforce literacy development milestones when working with children. The trainings introduce partner staff to the world of children’s books, share best practices for language play at home, and explore the developmental stages of language acquisition. 

To receive credit for this online training, please fill out the form here.

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