« Back to Education

Wonder of Reading (WoR) Partnership - Isleton Library; Isleton Elementary School

Sacramento Public Library

Innovation Leader: Natalie Beaver, Branch Supervisor, nbeaver@saclibrary.org

Problem Statement

55% of California public school fourth-graders failed to meet grade-level standards on the 2007 standardized reading assessment, ranking California 49th in the country in reading skills. The Sacramento Public Library partnered with Isleton Elementary School and The Wonder of Reading (WoR, a non-profit children’s literacy organization) to implement a grant from the California State Library to address this issue in a culturally diverse, economically challenged community.

Innovation

Sacramento Public Library’s Isleton Branch Library, Isleton Elementary School and WoR collaboration is a catalyst for parents and their children who require reading intervention. Seventy of the most at-risk students reading below grade level were selected by teachers and administration. These students receive direct reading intervention from a WoR credentialed teacher. In recognition of the crucial role parents play in the reading success of their children, the library and the reading specialist collaborate on a monthly Family Reading Program ranging from tips on setting up a home library, to an overview of the library’s databases, to a tri-lingual program provided by a popular children’s author, attended by 170 people in a community of slightly more than 800. Part of the project included $5,000 to purchase children’s non-fiction titles. Library staff leveraged these materials into an exciting eight-week program of reading around the world using stories, music, Google Earth, Skype, language learning, cultural traditions, art, games and snacks. This program facilitates an essential opportunity for inspired reading, discovery, and learning. Because of this collaborative partnership, we believe we have instilled the love of reading in the community of Isleton.

Progress

The grant has been renewed for a second year based on strong initial success: 67% of the first - sixth grade students enrolled in the reading intervention initiative have attained one full year of grade level growth at their independent reading level according to their mid-year assessment. More than 50 families have attended one or more Family Reading Programs. The library programs assist the Isleton school students in achieving State academic standards and demonstrate the value of the library.