Friday, February 15, 2008

Greetings from Wisconsin!

Most Loyal Readers know already that their Leader Reader has departed California for Wisconsin. Here's a little update on my reading exploits since moving here:

Apart from venturing into a community book discussion group, I arrived just in time for River Falls Reads 2008 and attended the kick-off event featuring Jerene Mortenson, the mother of Greg Mortenson, author of Rights Readers selection Three Cups of Tea. As noted before, River Falls is the birthplace of "Pennies for Peace", a program that educates American children about the world beyond their experience and raises funds for schools in Central Asia. A few things I learned from the talk: that there are over 400 U.S. schools now in the program, and that pennies were chosen to make sure children of all incomes could participate. I was also intrigued to learn that storytelling is part of the curriculum for students in Pakistan, thus incorporating the elders of the village and the oral tradition into the schools. I would love to hear some of those stories! My California readers will also be heartened to learn that steps are being taken to build new schools that are designed to better withstand earthquakes. The rest of the River Falls Reads event line-up looks interesting as well. Small towns have a lot to offer! I am sure I will have more reading adventures to share in the future...
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