Disney and Nickelodeon Stars Go Back to School to Offer Reading Challenge to Los Angeles Second Graders
September 25, 2015
Karan Brar, Jack Griffo, and August Maturo participate in ‘Read To Me Challenge’ sponsored by SAG Foundation BookPALS and Rise Up Foundation
LOS ANGELES (September 25, 2015) – The second grade students of Coldwater Canyon Elementary School received a special surprise when some of their favorite television actors: Karan Brar (Disney Channel’s Jessie), Jack Griffo (Nickelodeon’s The Thundermans) and August Maturo (Disney Channel’s Girl Meets World) showed up for an afternoon of reading books aloud and issuing a challenging homework assignment. The Coldwater Canyon students were encouraged to take the Read To Me Challenge, a national literacy campaign developed by the Screen Actors Guild Foundation BookPALS (Performing Artists for Literacy in Schools) and the Rise Up Foundation. The challenge encourages students to read 15 minutes a day for 21 days with an adult in their lives.
“There’s this amazing feeling you get when you’re transported into a character’s world through a book, and I think every kid deserves that feeling and experience,” said Karan Brar.
The Read To Me Challenge is aimed at raising awareness and advancing the cause of children’s literacy. Whether you are a parent or grandparent, sibling or neighbor, educator or friend, research shows that reading aloud to children improves language, literacy, and academic outcomes. Emphasizing these goals, the Read To Me Challenge works to create a pattern of success for students and their families.
“I love the Read To Me Challenge because it will get people off of their electronics and spending more time together as a family! I love reading to my little brother Ocean every day. It brings us closer, and helps him learn to read too!” said August Maturo.
The Rise Up Foundation executive director and children’s book author Alane Adams also attended the back to school day of literacy. The actors read her book The Coal Thief and others during the event. Adams was thrilled by the enthusiasm the students shared for the challenge and for reading itself.
“An event like this really takes reading to the next level for kids,” said Adams. “Seeing these actors, who they idolize, embrace the power of books makes them that much more excited for their next read.”
“Reading and writing is a big part of what I am privileged to do as an actor so I am very grateful for my literacy education and I believe every child deserves the best,” said Jack Griffo.
About the Screen Actors Guild Foundation
In 2015, the Screen Actors Guild Foundation celebrates 30 years of providing vital assistance and educational programming to the professionals of SAG-AFTRA while serving the public at large through its signature children’s literacy programs. The SAG Foundation is a national 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, independent from SAG-AFTRA, and relies solely on support from grants, sponsorships, and individual contributions to maintain its programs and create new ones. For more information, visit sagfoundation.org. Follow @SAGFoundation on Twitter and Instagram. Like and subscribe to /SAGFoundation on Facebook and YouTube.
About Rise Foundation
The Rise Up Foundation provides resources to people, nonprofits and communities working toward prosperity and empowering children and families to achieve lifelong successes. Through book donations, classroom support, advocacy, and grant-making, the Rise Up Foundation is able to create real and lasting change for children and families in need. For more information please go to: riseupfoundation.org.