October 1, 2018

Jessica Pope
Communications and Media Relations Coordinator

Book Fair Benefits VSU Literacy Initiatives, Runs Oct. 1-5

VALDOSTA — Valdosta State University’s Department of Elementary Education will host a Fall Scholastic Book Fair from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, Oct. 1, through Thursday, Oct. 4, and from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 5. The semi-annual fundraiser will be held on the first floor of the Education Center and will feature lots of affordable, high quality books for school children of all ages.

Proceeds from the Fall Scholastic Book Fair will help purchase books and other materials for two VSU-based literacy initiatives — Read Fest and the Ruby R. Sullivan Literacy Center.

Sponsored by VSU’s Odum Library and the James L. and Dorothy H. Dewar College of Education and Human Services, Read Fest 2019 will be held in Spring 2019. Nearly 300 prekindergarten students from area schools will spend the morning participating in a variety of activities, including puppet shows, games, singing, crafts, read-along stories, and coloring. The purpose of the annual event is to promote literacy in the community by encouraging children to get excited about reading at an early age. Every participating child receives a book to take home.

The Ruby R. Sullivan Literacy Center offers several programs designed to help children in the elementary grades build literacy skills, gain confidence, and be more motivated to want to read for both pleasure and study year-round:

Literacy Education Assessment Program (LEAP): This is a literacy tutoring program that involves VSU pre-service teachers assessing the community children’s current literacy skills, developing specific literacy goals, providing one-on-one research-based literacy instruction and intervention, and monitoring the children’s literacy development progress. Students in LITR 4120: Literacy Assessment and Applications work with the children, gaining experience in assessing and planning appropriate literacy remediation. 

Blazing Through Books Program: This feeder program for LEAP pairs VSU athletes and students with community children in one-on-one and small group literacy skill-building activities, such as reading, writing, listening, and speaking.

Dear Blazer Buddy: This is a pen pal program that pairs community children with VSU athletes and students. It is designed to get the children involved in a reading and writing activity that is fun and motivating.

VSU has had some sort of literacy outreach initiative since 1989.

The Ruby R. Sullivan Literacy Center is located on the first floor of the Education Center.

Contact Dr. Sheryl Dasinger, interim director of the Ruby R. Sullivan Literacy Center and associate professor in the Department of Elementary Education, at sbdasin@valdosta.edu, (229) 333-5625, or (229) 333-5645 for more information.

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