augusta free press news

A Boy Called Bat is the inaugural title for #OneBookConnects

read to themRead to Them announced the launch of a new nationwide reading initiative intended to help build a sense of community by creating conversation and engagement around a single children’s book each month through August.

Schools, school districts, and individual families can all participate. The inaugural title will be A Boy Called BAT, by Elana K. Arnold, published by Walden Pond Press, an imprint of HarperCollins Children’s Books.

“We’re excited to offer this program to families across the nation to help create a sense of connection around a shared reading experience,” said Read to Them Executive Director, Christa Donohue. “#OneBookConnects provides opportunities for students, parents, and educators to interact through trivia questions, daily activities, and challenges connected to a book that everyone is reading together.”

Read to Them will provide A Boy Called BAT, by Elana K. Arnold to schools and families in a variety of media formats, as well as providing engagement resources via e-mail, social media, and its website.  Arnold has recorded a video greeting, the first chapter of the book, and will be available for an online interview to engage with students via social media.  Read to Them will share daily readings of A Boy Called BAT via live its social media channels.  HarperCollins Children’s Books will sponsor a grand prize for Read to Them’s national #onebookconnects contest, sending author Arnold for a visit to the winning school.

“Read to Them’s family literacy program, One School One Book, is an incredible tool for fostering kids’ love of books and deepening a connection between home and school,” says author Elana K. Arnold.  “I’m proud to join with Read to Them to help make A BOY CALLED BAT accessible to a wide range of families. One of the most comforting things we can do right now—for our children and ourselves—is read aloud.”

A Boy Called BAT is a children’s novel about a young boy who learns more about how to interact with his peers and family when he begins to care for an abandoned baby skunk.

The #OneBookConnects program will run through August 2020 with a new title featured each month. With schools closed and students sequestered across the country, the new program offers a novel method for families and schools to engage via social media during now and during the summer. Read to Them will announce the coming slate of titles shortly.

Read to Them is a Richmond based non-profit promoting family literacy, with literacy programs that have reached over 2 million families in over 3000 schools in all 50 states.  A growing body of research demonstrates that children who are read to at home become better readers, are more confident in school, and experience greater academic success.  Literacy skills provide the basis for a lifetime of learning and productivity.

For more information: