“There are many little ways to enlarge your child’s world. Love of books is the best of all.” — Jackie Kennedy

It is most likely that people who cannot read properly have poor prospects in our society. The ability to read is essential for acquiring an education.

Germany has been declared a “Leseland” (Reading Country) and “Stiftung Lesen” (Reading Foundation) focuses on the fact that every child and every adult should be given access to books or equivalent media resources, regardless of their cultural or social preconditions.

  • Reading and literacy performance is the basis for a successful school and work life
  • The ability to read is crucial for opinion forming, decision-making, social networking, social responsibility as well as successful participation in society
  • promoting literacy is the most effective investment in education

Stiftung Lesen” was founded in 1988 and is under the patronage of the German Federal President.
Annually the Foundation draws attention to some popular initiatives and campaigns, like a Nationwide Read-to-your-Kids Day, lots of activities on UNESCO World Book Day, Start Reading-Three Milestones for Reading, Reading for Refugee Families and more.

Early childhood education is on top of the foundation’s agenda and their programs deal in particular with the following issues:

  • attract parents and children to anchor reading in families’ everyday life as early as possible 
  • day-care facilities for children: training courses for kindergarten teachers 
  • school programs: the foundation provides didactic teaching material to promote interdisciplinary reading skills in schools; the main focus is the interaction of different types of media 
  • programs for young adults and leisure: there are reading clubs in every federal state as well as programs like “Poetry Slam”, “Soccer and Reading”, “Read and Exercise”

In 2006, the foundation established “The Institute for Reading and Media Research”. The institute identifies new trends, analyses changing reading habits, evaluates and is a driving force for the foundation’s program work.

Photo credit: “www.colourbox.com”. Source: https://www.stiftunglesen.de/

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