A Whole Other Twist on “Let Them Eat Cake!”
DC Elementary Librarian, Local Author, and National Education Lawyer
Team Up to Feed “Hungry Readers Chocolate Cake” Over the Summer!
Donation of Books to Truesdale Elementary Library, Students and School’s Little Free Library
Kicks Off Summer Reading Program and Extends Hungry Readers Campaign
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – June 21, 2021
Washington, D.C. – In a whole other twist on “Let them eat cake!”, Truesdale Elementary Librarian Eboni Henry, National Education Lawyer Gary M. Ratner, and Caroline Brewer, Author of the Forthcoming Say Their Names picture book and Darius Daniels: Game On! have teamed up to feed “hungry readers chocolate cake” over the summer.
The donation of more than 30 Books to Truesdale Elementary’s School Library, its students and the school’s Little Free Library takes place today at the school, 12:30 p.m. – 1:00 p.m., 800 Ingraham St NW, Washington, DC 20011.
The donation continues Brewer’s “Hungry Readers” campaign, where she has enlisted friends and family to help her donate books to schools, libraries, and youth programs in the DC Metro area and around the country. This iteration of the campaign has seen the donation of more than 250 copies of books, including more than 100 of Darius Daniels: Game On!, a book filled with rap, rhyme, and riddles, designed to get kids hooked on books. The donation includes picture books, chapter books, and middle grade novels, books with Black and Latino characters to feed the needs of the majority Latino and Black student population, books on the environment, and some Newberry Medal and Coretta Scott King Award winners. In years past, Brewer has donated thousands of books, mostly her own.
Truesdale Librarian Henry said she’s noticed that children aren’t visiting public libraries as often so she created a “Little Free Library” outside Truesdale where students and any member of the community can take books home and keep them for their own. She and a colleague usually supply the “library” throughout the summer. New donations from Brewer, Ratner, and other friends will help edify the collection.
“I’m a strong believer in the importance of reading to satisfaction and success in life. Knowing that Caroline Brewer’s books for children help some of our neediest children to attain this goal, I was pleased to make a donation to expand the availability of the extraordinary middle grade novel: Darius Daniels,” said Ratner, Founder and Executive Director of Citizens for Effective Schools. Ratner has been a nationally recognized authority on school reform law and policy for more than 30 years and is a principal drafter of the Joint Organizational Statement on No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act, the policy statement for overhauling NCLB endorsed by more than 150 national organizations and replacing it with the ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act). “Rich in cultural allusions and broadening vocabulary, Darius Daniels is an excellent way to engage, entertain and intellectually stimulate students this summer, while simultaneously combatting the traditional summer loss in reading skills.”
Brewer says she’s never met a child who wasn’t hungry to learn to read, write, and learn and that’s why she calls her campaign “Hungry Readers.” The authors of a new book, How to Raise a Reader, Pamela Paul and Maria Russo, the editor and the children’s-books editor, respectively, of The New York Times Book Review, have said that those who want to inspire reading love in children should present reading not as “spinach,” but as “chocolate cake.” Making books and reading fun has been Brewer’s calling card for the past 20 years as an author, literacy activist, and consultant. “I call rap, rhyme, and riddles ‘literacy accelerants,’ ” says Brewer. “When children get their hands on books that have meaning and are fun, many become brand-new and fall in love with themselves as human beings, whereas before they had lots of doubts. Good books feed children’s imaginations and inspire success and that’s all we’re here for.”
Connect with Caroline Brewer on the following sites: