This October, Singapore’s Prime Minister, Lee Hsien Loong, read Go to Sleep, Gecko! written by Dr. Margaret Read MacDonald and published by August House, to over 200 guests and children to commemorate kidsREAD’s10th anniversary.
Go to Sleep, Gecko’s author, Dr. MacDonald, travels the world collecting folk tales and stories that she has shaped into 55 books on folklore and storytelling. She was honored that Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong personally selected one of her books to commemorate such a highly successful literary initiative.
KidsREAD, sponsored by the National Library Board of Singapore, was founded in 2004 to cultivate strong reading habits and promote reading aloud to young children 4 to 8 years of age. With a mission to develop a love for reading in children of lower-income families, kidsREAD has created longstanding reading clubs across the country. Since its founding, the program has gathered 9,000 volunteers to help over 27,000 children develop reading skills.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong was pleased to spend time reading Go to Sleep Gecko with the children at the recent kidsREAD event. On his personal Facebook page, he remarks “Reading is one of the best gifts we can give a child,” and that “[he is] happy kidsREAD has brought this gift to so many children over the years.”
The video of the event (below) is worth a watch, as it shows how engaged the children are with Go to Sleep Gecko, the kidsREAD program, and with Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.