An area business is so invested in children’s literacy that it’s donating 100 percent of its Birthday Celebration sales to northwest Ohio’s only free reading tutoring program.
Shirley’s Gourmet Popcorn, 1042 Interstate Court, Findlay, is planning to contribute all of its sales on Saturday, June 10 to the Clubhouse, a targeted reading tutoring program for children in grades 1-9. The College of Education at the University of Findlay provides Clubhouse services at no charge to its young participants.
According to Shirley’s owner Jennifer Swartzlander, from 10 a.m.-3 p.m., there will be a story time with celebrity readers, free books and activities hosted by the Clubhouse faculty. Kids can also try their hand at Plinko to win popcorn and gift cards. Shirley’s will offer in-store promotions and free theatre-style popcorn for all guests during store hours.
Clubhouse Director Allison Baer, Ph.D., oversees four programs, including:
- The 3-2-1 Program, providing free, small group tutoring
- The CHIP Program, offering free, individual tutoring
- The 1882 Club, a reading motivation program that encourages children of all ages to read 1882 minutes in a University semester, and
- The Donnell Reading Club, supporting 6th grade students at Donnell Middle School, Findlay, through reading and after-school discussions.
According to Baer, all participants are given “pre” and “post” assessments to track individual growth and all Clubhouse lessons are designed to meet individual reading skills and needs. Tutors are UF education majors who have a solid knowledge of the reading process and instruction.
The Clubhouse holds sessions during the University’s fall and spring semesters and a condensed session in the summer. Approximately 150 children attend each semester.