What is a "reading culture"?
The way members of a school community behave towards books and reading constitutes the school's reading culture. In a healthy, vibrant reading culture, people are encouraged and expected to read a variety of books for both academic growth and personal enjoyment. In such cultures, books are accessible to everyone in the school, and reading is integrated into everyday life. RBK strives to strengthen the reading cultures of schools across Nepal by providing quality children's literature to students throughout the country.
Drop Everything and Read (DEAR)
The program Drop Everything and Read (DEAR) helps build a strong reading culture within a school. On DEAR days, members of a school community, no matter where they are or what they are doing, drop everything and read silently for a 20-30 minute session. Despite their relatively short length, these sessions offer an opportunity for students, teachers and staff to read purely for enjoyment, away from academic pressure. If integrated properly into the life of a school, DEAR can greatly strengthen the school's reading culture by showing that anyone, anytime, anywhere can read! Rato Bangala Kitab supports initiatives like DEAR, which help foster a love of books amongst students.
Members of Rato Bangala School (RBS) in Lalitpur, Nepal participated in their first DEAR session in 2015. Since then, the school has held DEAR sessions each term, and the program has garnered positive feedback from students, teachers and staff alike. RBS's sister organization, Rato Bangala Foundation (RBF), trains teachers in Nepal in how to implement DEAR programs in their own schools, with the hope that all Nepali students will learn to appreciate the power of reading.