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Citadel News Service
10 Sep 2010

Regional literacy program realized

Author visits to Charleston schools begin Sept. 14

Children’s author and illustrator Floyd Cooper will begin The Citadel’s new regional literacy program to bring authors and illustrators to Charleston’s schools.  A dedication ceremony, which will include remarks from local dignitaries, will be held from 6 to 8 p.m., Sept. 14 at the Hollywood Branch of Trident Technical College.

With the generous support of the Wal-Mart Foundation, the program was created to advance the literacy of underprivileged families in some of the city’s poorest neighborhoods.

“The vision to bring this program to life has been held strong for more than five years by the families and educators in our community, said Wendell Rodgers, director of grant programs in The Citadel School of Education and executive director of Gear Up, a federally funded grant program.  “Several of us recognized the severity of the problem and decided to create programs that would introduce children to the power of reading as a means to realize their potential and pursue their dreams. And, thanks to the Wal-Mart Foundation, this vision is now a reality.”

The illustrator of more than 50 children's books, Cooper has written and illustrated several of his own.  He was awarded the Coretta Scott King Award for Brown Honey in Broomwheat Tea.

Cooper calls his technique a “subtractive process.” He paints illustration board with oil pant and then with a stretchy eraser, he rubs out the paint to make a picture in the negative. When he demonstrates his different technique to children around the country he tells them, “There can be different approaches to solving age-old problems.”

The schedule of Cooper’s school presentations is as follows:

Tuesday, September 14
8:30 a.m., Blaney Elementary School
10 a.m., Minnie Hughes Elementary School
1 p.m., Jane Edwards Elementary School

Wednesday, September 15
9 a.m., E.B. Ellington Elementary School

Thursday, September 16
9 a.m., Baptist Hill Middle/High School

 

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