LEAPFROG LAUNCHES TAG. GIVE. READ. PROGRAM TO HELP MORE U.S. CHILDREN LEARN TO READ
$1.5 Million Gift of Tag Readers and Tag Books Laid Foundation for Ongoing Program to Give Schools Teacher-Recommended Tag Systems
Emeryville, CA, September 21, 2010 /PRNewswire/ — Today LeapFrog Enterprises, Inc. (NYSE: LF), education innovation leader and creator of award-winning learning products, announces its Tag. Give. Read. program to help more U.S. children learn and love to read. LeapFrog laid the program groundwork with a 2009 donation of $1.5 million in Tag Reading Systems and books to the classrooms of more than 10,000 U.S. Kindergarten students. By the end of the school year, 99% of teachers said they would recommend Tag Readers to other teachers and to parents, because their students’ attitudes about reading and reading skills both had improved.
Now, with Tag. Give. Read., LeapFrog is paving the way for others to “give the gift of reading” and put Tag materials into the hands of 30,000 more U.S. schoolchildren. LeapFrog has given $100,000 to DonorsChoose.org, to match donations made to teachers requesting Tag systems. And even those who do not have money to give can make a difference, by becoming a fan of LeapFrog on Facebook. For each new “like,” LeapFrog will give a Tag book to a Kindergarten teacher, up to 25,000 books.
“LeapFrog is committed to helping more children learn to read and to become enthusiastic readers for life,” said CEO Bill Chiasson. “Teachers have spoken—our initial donation of $1.5 million in Tag Readers made a real difference for them and their students. We look forward to continuing our mission by bringing Tag technology to nearly 30,000 more students with our Tag. Give. Read. program. And we are excited to work with DonorsChoose.org to make that happen, for the good of children nationwide.”
Combating a Crisis in Literacy
According to the 2010 National Reading Report Card, nearly two-thirds of U.S. fourth-graders read below grade level. Studies also show that children who get help early and who enjoy reading are more likely to be successful in school. The later that help comes, the greater chance that a student who has fallen behind will develop negative attitudes about reading and never truly “catch up.”
With early education funding cut in many states, LeapFrog wanted to give help where it meant the most—in Kindergarten, the year when children begin to learn to read. More than 96% of the teachers who used Tag systems in their Kindergarten classrooms said their students’ attitudes about reading improved, and 95% said their students wanted to spend more time reading. And after several months, 97% of teachers said their students exhibited better reading skills.
“Having the Tag Readers has been like having extra teachers in the room with me,” said Florida Kindergarten teacher Denise Perry. “My entire class was actually engaged in the books, even the students who had been unenthusiastic readers. The children could not wait to come back to school each morning to ‘play Tag.’ And they did more than play—they became better readers.”
Anyone Can Help
By providing matching funds through DonorsChoose.org, LeapFrog is doubling the gifts of anyone who wants to “give the gift of reading” to teachers requesting Tag systems. Those who wish to give can visit the Tag. Give. Read. page at LeapFrog.com. All DonorsChoose.org projects that are eligible for the LeapFrog match are searchable by teacher name or geographic area. Once a teacher’s goal for Tag Readers is half-met by donors, LeapFrog provides the rest.
And every donor will see their gift in action, through photos of the students, along with thank-you notes and a cost report showing how their dollars were spent.
In addition to giving funding through DonorsChoose, LeapFrog will put Tag materials in the hands of 20,000 more children through a Facebook “Virtual Book Drive.” On behalf of each new LeapFrog fan, LeapFrog will donate one Tag book to a Kindergarten teacher, up to 25,000 books.
The Tag Reading System
The Tag Reader is a handheld, learn-to-read tool for children from Pre-Kindergarten to third grade. When children touch the Tag Reader to specially printed materials, they can get on-demand pronunciation for individual words, listen to audio from characters and story elements and play activities that reinforce key skills such as comprehension and vocabulary development.
When using the Tag Reader at home, parents and children get the same learning and play benefits available in the classroom, for extra engagement and reinforcement of skills. And parents can connect the Tag Reader to the online Learning Path to see what their child is learning while they play.
For More Information
To become part of the Tag. Give. Read. program, visit http://www.leapfrog.com/tag for links to DonorsChoose.org and the “Virtual Book Drive” page on Facebook.
The Tag Reading System is available at leapfrog.com and at all major retailers, MSRP $39.99. The Tag School Reading System is available at leapfrogschool.com, MSRP $70.00.
LeapFrog is a leader in education innovation—creating award-winning toys and reading and mobile learning systems that bring together robust technology, curriculum and characters from popular entertainment to create engaging and interactive learning experiences that make play and learning even more fun. Our mission is to inspire a lifelong love of learning. LeapFrog has been a leader in teaching children to read since the bestselling LeapPad Learning System came to market more than a decade ago, leadership that continues with the bestselling Tag Reading System. With more than 120 million educational systems, books and games in homes worldwide, in 4 languages at major retailers in more than 44 countries, plus multisensory technology in more than 100,000 U.S. classrooms, the LeapFrog brand is trusted by parents, valued by teachers and loved by children. Many of LeapFrog’s newest products connect to the Internet to expand and enhance on-the-go play with additional interactive experiences. And all our products are a strategic part of our proprietary, online Learning Path—empowering parents by providing personalized insights and recommendations to help them see and share in their child’s learning progress.
LEAPFROG, the LeapFrog logo and TAG are trademarks or registered trademarks of LeapFrog Enterprises, Inc. Copyright © 2010 LeapFrog Enterprises, Inc. All rights reserved.