A total of 75,000 free copies of the children’s book The Little Red Fort, written by Brenda Maier and illustrated by Sonia Sanchez, will be available in English and Spanish through Oct. 25 for every 4-year-old child in the state as part of the One Book Colorado program. Denver7 is a proud partner of One Book Colorado.
Now in its ninth year, One Book Colorado is a privately funded collaboration among Serve Colorado, the Colorado State Library, the Denver Preschool Program, Denver7, Mile High United Way, and public and military libraries across the state. Additionally, Denver Public Library has joined as the program’s virtual event partner for 2020.
The 2020 One Book Colorado selection follows Ruby, a girl who finds some old boards and decides to build something. With sprightly text and winsome pictures, The Little Red Fort is a modern spin on the timeless tale of The Little Red Hen and celebrates the pluck and ingenuity of young creators everywhere.
Copies of the book will be available through Sunday, Oct. 25, in every Denver Preschool Program classroom and through every public and military library in Colorado. Check with your local library to see how each location is handling book distribution.
The One Book Colorado program stems from the idea that providing young children with access to books promotes early literacy skills and helps parents and families serve as their children’s first and most important teachers. Research has shown that 37 percent of children begin kindergarten without the reading skills necessary for lifelong learning. Children are more likely to show up to their kindergarten classroom ready to read if they have had regular access to books and adults who read with them frequently. The state has a new website, ReadWithMe.Today, that provides tips and resources to help parents make reading a part of their child’s daily routine.
For low-income families, access to quality books and early literacy efforts are even more important, as research shows that children in low-income families tend to have fewer books in their homes and are exposed to 30 million fewer words before the age of four than their higher-income peers. One Book Colorado aims to help close this vocabulary gap by giving a free book to every four-year-old in the state.
Many thanks to these generous sponsors for their support of One Book Colorado:
· Parent Possible
· State Farm
· Growing Readers Together
· Colorado Office of Early Childhood
· Buell Foundation
· Cydney and Tom Marsico Family Foundation
· Junior League of Denver
· PNC Bank
· Scripps Howard Foundation
· Southwest Airlines
· WH Smith
· Aspen Community Foundation
· Colorado Department of Education
A copy of “The Little Red Fort” is available for any child who is, or has been, 4 years old in 2020.