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Children gather for story time with First Lady Crissy Haslam

Tennessee First Lady Crissy Haslam read to children June 21 at the Williamson County Public Library in Franklin.

Photos by Kerri Bartlett

Tennessee First Lady Crissy Haslam read “V is for Volunteer” by Michael Shoulders to community children Friday morning at the Williamson County Public Library in Franklin as part of the Reading Fun Fair in partnership with the United Way of Williamson County. 
The Reading Fun Fair at the library promoted “Raise Your Hand Williamson,” a reading partnership between United Way and schools in the county, as well as helped to kick off the United Way Day of Action, which calls for people around the world to become a volunteer in their community. The organization’s goal this year is to gain 21,000 volunteers, according to Pam Bryant, President and CEO of United Way.
“The earlier parents start reading with their children the better,” Haslam said. 

Pam Bryant (left), President and CEO of United Way of Williamson County,
and First Lady Crissy Haslam prepare for reading time. 

As part of the First Lady’s reading initiative Read 20, encouraging parents to read to their child for 20 minutes a day, Haslam has spoken around the state about increasing parent involvement in children’s education.

“Early literacy is the best predictor of success in life. Caring adults working with children can help boost academic success,” she said. 
Crissy Haslam reads "V Is for Volunteer" to children at the Williamson County Public Library Friday morning. 
Haslam also shared that students who have participated in Raise Your Hand Williamson in the Williamson County Schools district and Franklin Special School District have experienced increased reading and math test scores compared to their peers. 
Haslam shared her favorite book growing up – “Winnie the Pooh.” “I used to love reading the hardback version,” she said.

Face painting, Chick-Fil-A and the Williamson County sheriff's office, fire department and highway department joined in the festivities with special booths for kids, including booths with big trucks that children could climb, sit and honk horns.  
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Posted on: 6/21/2013


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