06/12/2014 (press release: liznealon) // Great Neck, New York, USA // Ron Maas
StarWalk Kids Media has announced that it will make all 500 eBooks in its collection available free of charge for anyone with Internet access—children, families and educators—during the entire month of July. NO Passwords • NO logins. Kids can just start reading by visiting StarWalkKids.com/PopUp between July 1 and July 31. “This is our second summer of making our PopUp Library available to all children,” said founder and author Seymour Simon. “I’d like to see all teachers and librarians include our streaming collection in their summer reading programs, for kids to sample and enjoy.”
According to the National Summer Reading Association, low-income students lose more than two months in reading achievement when they are not in school during the summer, and more than half of the achievement gap between lower- and higher-income youth can be explained by unequal access to summer learning opportunities. StarWalk Kids Media Publisher Liz Nealon notes that she hopes that educators, administrators and librarians will send the PopUp Library downloadable flyer home in students’ backpacks for the summer. “Summer reading loss inevitably occurs during summer vacation times when children are away from the classroom and not involved in formal reading activities,” said Nealon. “We hope to help close that gap by making exciting, narrated eBooks available to all children, at no cost, throughout the month of July.”
Anyone who visits www.StarWalkKids.com/popup can immediately read any eBook on any device. School Library Journal described the collection as “…gorgeously designed Pre-K through Grade 8 eBooks…Tightly curated for exceptional quality, the collection is about 60 percent highly illustrated nonfiction, and all titles are simultaneous-access licensed, making a subscription to StarWalk Kids a solid way to support Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for reading and writing.” Most StarWalk Kids eBooks also offer a “Read to Me” option for kids, with high quality, professional narration.
Founder @seymoursimon, who launched the original #PopUpLibrary campaign via his Twitter feed, notes that the whole idea of a “Pop Up Library” means that surprise access can happen at any time. “We are already planning the next opportunity for a “PopUp” treat. Our goal is to get kids excited about reading with our great eBooks….so you probably have not seen the last #PopUpLibrary surprise!”
ABOUT StarWalk Kids Media: StarWalk Kids Media, recognizing the importance of equipping students with 21st Century digital literacy skills, publishes an award-winning collection of 500 engaging, enhanced eBooks for children in grades K-8. Founded by renowned children’s science author Seymour Simon and former Sesame Street Creative Director Liz Nealon, the StarWalk Kids collection includes books by many well-known authors and illustrators such as David Adler, Jim Arnosky, Johanna Hurwitz, Pat Mora, Laura Vaccaro Seeger and Jane Yolen. The company’s aim is to provide children and educators with a tightly curated collection of high-quality fiction and nonfiction titles supporting the Common Core. The StarWalk Kids Reader™ software works on virtually any device, allowing multiple simultaneous access for students at an affordable, annual subscription price. The StarWalk Kids platform, which currently serves more than 300,000 students in the US and abroad, has been awarded the QED seal, signifying “Quality. Excellence. Design” by the Digital Book Awards.
StarWalk Kids Media founder Seymour Simon (@SeymourSimon) was dubbed “the Dean of the [children’s science book] field” by The New York Times. Simon has written more than 275 books for young readers and has received the American Association for the Advancement of Science’s/Subaru Lifetime Achievement Award for his lasting contribution to children’s science literature.
Co-founder Liz Nealon led the creative development of the Peabody and Emmy Award-winning SesameStreet.org in her former role as Executive Vice President/Creative Director of Sesame Street. In addition to her role as Publisher and CEO of StarWalk Kids Media, Nealon is the Managing Editor of SeymourSimon.com, which has been designated one of ALA’s “Great Websites for Kids,” and is a Webby Honoree. Nealon was also the creator and Executive Producer of the landmark PBS children’s literacy series Ghostwriter.
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