New Jersey Senator Cory Booker has launched a new YouTube series "Read Along With Cory," in partnership with Read Across America, MadameNoire reports.
For his inaugural episode, Booker highlighted Aliya King Neil’s insightful children’s book Keep Your Head Up.
“Okay, THIS got me choked up y’all,” King wrote in a Facebook post responding to the news “Shout out to Senator Booker and his team for this very special honor. Happy Read Along Day!!”
Illustrated by artist Charly Palmer and published by Denene Millner Books, the book aims to teach children “that it’s okay to have a bad day and gives a sweet reminder that even on the worst days, it’s important to keep your head up and be kind to yourself.”
In 1998, the National Education Association( NEA) launched Read Across America which seeks to motivate children and teens to involve themselves in reading partnership programs and to deliver reading resources to vulnerable communities. The initiative strives to include books that “students can see themselves reflected in,” with material that “allows readers to see a world or a character that might be different than them,” the NEA’s website states.
According to the U.S. National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), about 34% of fourth grade students are below basic reading level, while 27% of eighth-grade students are below basic reading levels.
Booker’s series coincides with National Reading Month which takes place throughout March.