Reading has a positive impact on health and well-being, particularly for children. Reading to, or with, a young child supports cognitive development, builds language skills and increases creativity and imagination, among other benefits.1
Reading ability is also tied to academic success and educational attainment. Education – an important social driver of health – shapes opportunities for future employment and income opportunities and is strongly associated with life expectancy and healthy behaviors.2
Helping create lifelong readers
To help children in underserved areas of Nevada grow as readers and to promote reading proficiency, Health Plan of Nevada, a UnitedHealthcare Company, provided $39,000 in funding to support Scholastic Book Fairs at five elementary schools in the state. The book fairs allowed children to choose books to take home at no cost.
Throughout the month of May, Scholastic Book Fairs took place at Fay Herron Elementary School and Reynaldo Martinez Elementary School in North Las Vegas, Gwendolyn Woolley Elementary School in Las Vegas, and Echo Loder Elementary School and Dorothy Lemelson S.T.E.M. Academy Elementary School in Reno. In total, the fairs reached over 2,500 students who selected over 5,000 free books based upon their interests and reading levels. This represents over 15,000 hours of reading time.
Encouraging children to choose books they love
According to the National Assessment of Educational Progress, fourth grade reading scores declined across all regions of the country and in 30 states/jurisdictions in 2022.3 In Nevada, 69% of fourth graders were not proficient in reading.4
Scholastic Book Fairs aims to increase reading enjoyment for children in elementary school by offering a selection of books from over 100 publishers. The fairs are structured to encourage students to explore books and make their own choices about which ones they want to take home. Research shows that a book-filled home encourages a culture of reading for enjoyment and talking about books.5
Supporting children’s whole-person health
The mission of Scholastic Book Fairs aligns with our commitment to address social drivers of health to help people across Nevada live healthier lives. We’re honored to support the development of lifelong readers and to help families expand their at-home libraries.
- https://www.all4kids.org/news/blog/the-importance-of-reading-to-your-children/ Opens in a new window
- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7326385/ Opens in a new window
- https://www.nationsreportcard.gov/highlights/reading/2022/# Opens in a new window
- https://assets.aecf.org/m/databook/2022KCDB-profile-NV.pdf Opens in a new window
- https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0049089X18300607 Opens in a new window