The entire month of April is School Library Month. Kiss a media specialist for all she or he does for you (or at least take a few minutes to send a "thank you" email or, better yet, a sincere "I appreciate" note to that person's supervisor (principal, school administrator, district media and information services director).
Barnes and Nobles Bridge Street in Huntsville, AL is hosting a special event to kick off Week of the Young Child (see below). It's April 10 from 12:00 until 3:00PM. (Don't worry if you see "Kathy Miller" in the announcement at this link - it's a typo that's being corrected - it is me!)
If you live nearby, come join us for fun interactive activities for both parents of 3-6 year old children and educators from preschool AND kindergarten plus giveaways for teachers and book signings. After the tea, we'll be having a book signing for me and other authors.
Don't live nearby? See if your local bookstore might do something similar with local literacy advocates, authors, librarians, teachers, etc. Either way, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and you can receive a flyer to distribute about our event (or copy to create your own). Be sure to include APRIL 10 FLYER in the subject line.
This year both the American Library Association's National Library Week and NAEYC's Week of the Young Child fall at the same time. You can find tons of resources on these organization's websites to help you celebrate.
April 12 is Drop Everything And Read Day. If your school can't devote an entire day to this event, try giving every teacher a kazoo, a whistle, or a bell and encouraging each to designate 3-5 times during the day (not announced ahead of time to the students) in which they will signal it is "drop everything and read" time. You can set up the "watch for the signal" earlier in the week so students bring ANYTHING they want to read. Involve parents if you like.
On the very day, be sure to have some juicy reads for those who "forgot" theirs, re-announce the "watch for the signal" (how your day will run), surprise them with a quick 5 or 10 minute break to read several times during the day. Let the last "drop everything and read" be an explosion of sharing where as many read the best part of what they read (only a sentence or short paragraph each) and see how many you can squeeze into the designated time. Be sure to capture the titles your students are reading so you can create a list or bulletin board to extend the excitement of the day.
You might also be on the lookout for the annual state of library's report (to be released April 13) and check out last year's plus a few quotable quotes on libraries. Most of us dread April 15 because of tax day but did you know that it is also Teen Literature Day?
Let your students check out their favorite author's birthdays in April at http://kids.nypl.org/reading/childrensauthorbirthdays.cfm.
Do you know of other reasons (and dates) to celebrate reading (or writing) during the month of April?
If so, post them here or share your own ideas for any of the celebration days above so we can all learn and celebrate reading together!