Reach Out and Read: Doctors prescribe reading for young children

“RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) – Most people get their books from the library or at school, but for some children, it comes during their first medical exam.

It’s part of a program called “Reach Out and Read,” dedicated to getting children and their parents to read together starting at an early age. Anyone who makes an appointment for a child 0-5 can walk away with a new book at participating locations.

“It doesn’t matter if the child can read or not; it’s about starting that conversation,” said Helen Tanner, an assistant medical provider at the Daily Planet Health Services. “If you read to your child every day for 20 minutes, your child will be exposed to two million words by the time they are entering Kindergarten.”

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