May 12, 2015
Tallahassee, Fla. – Children’s laughter filled the rooms of the Governor’s Mansion this morning when nearly 70 local elementary school students joined Florida First Lady Ann Scott as she kicked off her highly anticipated Summer Literacy Adventure. In its fifth year, the initiative encourages children to stay active and motivated about reading during this year’s summer break. The Summer Literacy Adventure is supported by the Department of Education, the Department of Environmental Protection and the Florida Lottery.
“Reading has always been an important part of my life,” said Mrs. Scott. “I want to challenge all of Florida’s students to join me in reading as many books as possible during the summer break and take the Summer Literacy Adventure Pledge.”
During the kick off, Mrs. Scott read the comical children’s book, “The Day the Crayons Quit,” by Drew Daywalt to students from Astoria Park Elementary School in Leon County and Galloway Charter Academy in Gadsden County.
“Strong reading skills are an essential part of the learning process and we must do all that we can to encourage our children to make reading a part of their daily lives,” said Education Commissioner Pam Stewart. “When students read regularly, they gain confidence and ultimately do better in school. I’m thrilled to help introduce the Summer Literacy Adventure and hope all of our families have a chance to participate in this wonderful journey.”
The 2015 Summer Literacy Adventure Program is a partnership with the Florida Department of Education, the Florida Lottery and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection.
“Supporting education is the Florida Lottery’s top priority,” said DOE Secretary Cynthia O’Connell. “Programs like the Summer Literacy Adventure take our students on a learning journey that leads them to a brighter future.”
Following the reading with Mrs. Scott, students had the opportunity to engage in a scavenger hunt throughout the mansion and participate in a trivia contest about Florida’s wildlife.
“We are proud to work with First Lady Ann Scott and our partners to encourage students to read over the summer,” said DEP Secretary Jon Steverson. “Florida’s beautiful natural resources have served as the inspiration for countless books, and I encourage students to read a book about Florida’s environment or history this summer, and then visit a state park to learn even more.”
The 2015 Summer Literacy Adventure helps keep Florida students excited about reading and literacy. Research shows that children who do not continue reading through the summer can lose a month or more of progress made during the school year. By encouraging their children to read, parents play an important role in ensuring every child reads at or above grade level.
“Student learning should continue during the summer months, and this program is a great way for families to participate in the education process beyond the classroom,” said 2015 Florida Teacher of the Year Christie Bassett. “Reading is one of the most valuable activities we can encourage our students to do, and their lives are enriched when they are surrounded by a wide variety of reading materials.”
Each student can fill out his or her reading pledge on the Summer Literacy Adventure website. At the end of the summer, program representatives will announce which school has pledged to read the most books, and the winning school will receive a special visit from Mrs. Scott.
For more valuable resources for students and parents, visit the Just Read, Florida! office website.