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TAMIU’s Youngest Graduates Celebrate at Grad Ceremony Friday Posted: 11/11/15

TAMIU’s Youngest Graduates Celebrate at Grad Ceremony Friday

 

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           Some of Texas A&M International University’s (TAMIU) youngest students will receive their first graduation experience in ceremonies scheduled Friday, Nov. 13 at 6 p.m. in Bob Bullock Hall 101.

           These young students, ranging from 2-4 years of age, are participants in the University’s Read-3 Early Literacy Program, a collaborative effort with HEB Stores now entering its third year and focused on helping children and their parents fully embrace literacy and its importance.

            In addition to HEB Stores, the program is delivered by the University’s College of Education in partnership with the Laredo Public Library and Ligarde Elementary School. Ten College of Education students support the program as either lead teachers or teacher aides.

             Some 50, primarily low-income families are enrolled in the five-week program, which has impacted over 200 families. Children are given books to take home and continue to read with their family members. First launched at TAMIU in 2012, the Program was piloted in Brownsville. It is now offered across the State.

             Read-3 includes free workshops on early literacy and also nutrition, said program director Dr. Xuesong Wang, TAMIU assistant professor of early childhood education.

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            “Our goal is that these parents read at least three times a week to and with their little ones. Children exposed to such literacy efforts gain important basic literacy skills before they enter schools,” Dr. Wang explained, adding, “The nutrition curriculum, developed by HEB, reinforces the importance of good nutrition in the development of strong minds and bodies.”

            On Friday, about 90 family members, TAMIU student teachers, and volunteers from the Laredo Public Library, and HEB stores will cheer on children graduating.

            Dr. Wang says the local impact  of the Read 3 Program is measurable.

            “Our experiences and research data have shown that children and their parents really benefit from the program. Many parents have brought their friends to the program based on their past experiences,” Wang noted.  

            TAMIU’s Dean of the College of Education, Dr. Catheryn Weitman, said the College is proud of the TAMIU HEB-Read 3 Program collaboration.

           “Dr. Wang's creativity brought the TAMIU HEB-Read 3 program from a single setting to one open to the community of young readers and their families. She initiated the only program in the State offered at a library. This is also a remarkable opportunity for our students who will be highly motivated to work with young children as future educators.  Dr. Wang’s dedicated work with this important collaborative community program with HEB is powerfully helping families link reading with healthy living and brighter futures,” Dr. Weitman said. 

          For additional information on the TAMIU HEB-Read 3 Program, contact Dr. Wang at  xuesong.wang@tamiu.edu or call TAMIU offices at 956.3263156.

          University information is also available online at tamiu.edu and on its social media sites on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube.