CIP continues literacy outreach with superhero powers

Family Day at the Park: Princess Tiana

One of the highlights of Record Family Day at the Park—Stockton’s largest annual literacy celebration—has been Community Involvement Program (CIP) students dressing up as superheroes and literary characters to read to children.

The event, which draws large crowds each September, had to be re-invented this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. But the new iteration of Family Day still has a strong literacy component from University of the Pacific’s CIP students

Several students once again donned superhero or children’s character costumes and created videos of themselves reading. These videos were given to Family Day organizers for inclusion in the virtual version of the annual event created by The Record newspaper.

The online videos can be used and enjoyed by anyone, including children, teachers, day care providers, and parents and guardians.

“It is important to promote children’s literacy, especially in today’s society. With technology on the rise, literacy has been put on the back burner,” said LaNee’ White ’21. “Dressing up as someone who children look up to is such a rewarding experience. Not only do they see their idols, but they see their idols promoting the good in the world.”

Alicia Perry, assistant director of CIP, said she is pleased by the way students adapted to the “virtual” interaction by making the videos.

“They were very concerned about the quality of the videos and wanted to do the best work possible to help the children who will be watching,” Perry said. “This has been a tradition for CIP students. They love to read to children.

“It started as the community project for one of our cohorts a number of years ago, and we are pleased that we have been able to keep it going.”

Family Day is virtually spread over two months this year. The week of Sept. 2127 is known as Library Lane and is sponsored by Pacific’s Beyond Our Gates program.

CIP students produced videos (click on the links with their names to watch):

“There are few things in life more precious than the excitement of a child,” said Hazel, who played Captain Marvel for the second year. “This event is so valuable because when a child gets to read with their favorite hero or princess, their enthusiasm for reading grows, which is so important for their long-term success.”

Children’s literacy is a yearlong passion for CIP students. They have a YouTube channel with 13 videos of students reading a selection of children’s books.