During a group reading of a locally-written book about Memphis, Tennessee First Lady Crissy Haslam noted that kids "learn to read" up to third grade but after third grade they "read to learn."
"As I travel the state I always talk about parents being involved in the academic lives of their children and reading to their children at a very young age," says Haslam, who visited Le Bonheur Children's Hospital on Tuesday.
The First Lady visited some of the patients on Le Bonheur's neuroscience floor, reading to them
"We Live in Memphis," a book by local Memphis historian Perre Magness. It was a part of her "Read 20" campaign to get parents to read with their children for at least 20 minutes every day.
"I really appreciate their involvement and engagement in what I go around and talk about in Tennessee which is parents being involved in the academic lives of their children, in particular reading with their children," says Haslam.
Haslam's "Read 20 Book Club" (http://www.tn.gov/firstlady/read20/) also provides families with a children's book of the month along with activities for families to go along with the book. According to the website, reading 20 minutes every day exposes children to 1.8 million words and provides families with nearly 120 hours of bonding.
Tuesday was also Haslam's first time visiting Le Bonheur since becoming First Lady and since the new building opened.
"It's wonderful to visit with the patients here," she said. "They're going through so much and it has to be hard and it's uplifting to me to be able to visit with them and see how brave they are."