Thank You Community Foundation

We are so thankful for the grant from Community Foundation to buy books for little ones in Adams, Pike, McDonough, and Hancock Counties. The books go to babies in the WIC programs along with encouragement and support from nurses and volunteers. Does it matter? YES! The percent of parents reading five or more days a week has doubled. Way to go!

Thank You Quincy Noon Kiwanis

We are so grateful to Noon Kiwanis for helping us buy books for children at Adams County Health Department. Parent at the WIC department have increased their reading frequency because they have beautiful board books for their toddlers.

Thank you Breakfast Kiwanis

Thank you so very much to the Quincy Gem City Breakfast Kiwanis Club for the grant dollars to buy beautiful new board books for babies and toddlers in the WIC program at Adams County Health Department. Our wonderful volunteers meet with parents and read with children. Each parent gets to choose a book to take home to read and build brains at home. These awesome parents are now reading 5 days a week and enjoying the lovely new books. Thank you Kiwanis Club. You do so much for the local children.

Thank you Jacksonville Rotary

Rotary Club learned about Ready. Set. Grow! from Debbie Niederhauser. Thank you Jacksonvill Rotary for donating funds to buy books for children at Morgan County Health Department. We love your support and enthusiasm.

Childbirth class brain-builders

Did you know that all new parents in childbirth classes at Blessing and at Passavant learn about serve-and-return interaction starting from birth? They also receive a “Let’s Talk!” Onesie to remind them to talk back and forth to Baby. When they deliver the baby in the hospital they will hear from their nurse about serve-and- return and receive a “Let’s Talk!” Wipe box.

Brain-Building from birth! Way to go new parents.

Thank you Community Foundation

We received a grant today to help provide books to families at the Adams, Brown, Hancock,

and Pike health departments. Thank you. Thank you.

Putting books in the hands of families of young children is so different from just saying “read.”

Thank you noon Kiwanis for supporting Ready Set Grow volunteer reader initiative at Adams County Health Department.

Kiwanis grant

Thank you Gem City Breakfast Kiwanis

We are extending a huge thank you to Gem City Breakfast Kiwanis club for their support of Ready. set. Grow!

We received a grant that will buy books for families at Adams County Health Departmen. Our fabulous volunteers meet with parents and chat about the brain building power of reading. Each parent gets to choose a book to take home and read to their little one. They families are reading, reading, reading. Because they have these books easily available the parents now read more frequently than the county average. Way to go! Thank you for the books!


Buddies Boost Brains with books at Ellington

By Deborah Gertz Husar Herald-Whig
Posted: Apr. 18, 2018 9:00 am
QUINCY — Ellington School third-grader Ryleigh Hoyt and her first-grade buddy Carina Epperley have several things in common — including a love of llamas in red pajamas.

Ryleigh read aloud “Llama Llama Red Pajamas” during a Tuesday afternoon get-together focused on the importance of reading and brain development.

Reading to someone younger “makes them learn,” Ryleigh said. “I really like reading.”

Carina liked listening to the story before she took a turn reading a book to Ryleigh — and even hanging out with her buddy was fun.

The third-graders also designed posters to take home with their books to emphasize the importance of reading to develop the architecture of the brain.

“The students will go and talk to their parents about why it’s important to read to young students, and if there’s someone in their life younger than them, they pledged to read that book,” third-grade teacher Rozlyn Wahlen said.

“I’m hoping this will reinforce that importance of reading and learning because students are able to take a leadership role in reading to someone else. Third grade is kind of where you start reading to learn instead of learning to read. They’re taking that ownership and pride in what they’re able to do and taking it to someone else.”

Reading aloud to each other is fun “because we are friends,” first-grader Zander Gioviannia said while sitting next to his buddy, third-grader David Zellmer. “For little kids, it helps them get smarter,” David said.

The project is part of the Ready. Set. Grow! West Central Illinois initiative, offered through Regional Office of Education 1 and supported by United Way of Adams County, to shrink the kindergarten readiness gap.

Jan Cory, professional development consultant with the Regional Office of Education, met with Wahlen’s class to talk about the importance of reading and how the thinking that’s required at school helps grow the “architecture of the brain” for future learning.

“That’s true for us throughout our life, but the younger we are, the more brain cell connections grow,” Cory said.

Reading to young children also builds vocabulary, comprehension and the ability to focus. Ready. Set. Grow! hopes all parents read five or more days a week to help their children find later school success.

“A lot of people know it’s a good idea to read, but we want them to know it changes the architecture of the brain,” Cory said. “These kids are going out being emissaries of getting the message to people they know in their neighborhood, their families and in their school.”

Other local schools previously participated in the initiative.

Third-grade students at Adams School wrote two books with their music teacher, and one book, “Bingo,” was adopted by Quincy Medical Group and given to children at well-child visits. Liberty School collected gently used books, and Baldwin sixth-graders and the Early Childhood and Family Center collected money to buy new books for children visiting the Adams County Health Department.

“It is a fun project,” Wahlen said. “It’s wonderful.”