Recent studies argue that dads are significantly less likely to read to their children than moms are. But that’s a stereotype we can change this Father’s Day and here’s how we can do it…
We need your help, dear readers, and what we need your help with is READING.
Specifically, we need help as it relates to DADS and READING, because there are people out there who are saying that fathers aren’t doing enough when it comes to reading with their kids. There are studies online suggesting that only 19 percent of 16-24 year-old fathers say they enjoy reading at bedtime with their children. And there’s a lot more data from Pew Research and other sources that argue that fathers are significantly less involved than mothers when it comes to the reading lives of their children.
But we don’t think that’s the full story.
That’s why, for Father’s Day this year, The Good Men Project is teaming up with Zoobean, the children’s app and book curation service, to combat that message head-on with the #DadsRead campaign.
The #DadsRead campaign is a grassroots effort to both encourage more fathers to read to their children and to celebrate the ones who are already doing it, but not getting the recognition they deserve. (The hashtag can be read in two ways—either the imperative “Dads, READ!” or the declarative “DADS READ!”)
From June 3rd until Father’s Day on June 15th, Zoobean, The Good Men Project, and the rest of our promotional partners are going to sharing personal stories, articles, and images across social media, all tied together with the hashtag #DadsRead.
AND WE NEED YOUR HELP.
Here are FIVE WAYS you can get involved with the #DadsRead campaign for Father’s Day:
1. SHOW US WHAT DADS READING REALLY LOOK LIKE
If you have a great picture of your dad reading with you OR if you’re a dad and you have a picture of you reading with your kids, share it on Instagram or Twitter and tag it with #DadsRead. We want to flood social media with positive images of fathers taking the time to share books with their kids. We’ll be keeping our eye on the #DadsRead hashtag during the campaign and sharing our favorites with our social media followers.
2. SHARE YOUR STORIES WITH US
If you have a favorite article or blog post about the importance of dads reading, share it on Twitter or Facebook with the #DadsRead tag. If your dad helped you develop a lifelong love of reading, tell us in the comments below or comment on one of our stories that we’ll be sharing on Facebook. We have our own stories that we want to share during this campaign, but we also want YOU to have the opportunity to share your stories with our readers as well.
3. TELL PEOPLE ABOUT #DADSREAD
Do you know someone who might be interesting in the #DadsRead campaign? Or think it sounds like just the sort of thing that your library’s reading group might be interested in? Then tell them about #DadsRead. Send them links to the stories we’ll be sharing over the next two weeks, let them know about the hashtag, or point them towards Zoobean or The Good Men Project to learn more.
4. COME TO OUR TWITTER PARTY AND WIN FABULOUS PRIZES
On Thursday, June 12 at 8 pm ET, Zoobean and The Good Men Project will be co-hosting a Twitter party to celebrate the #DadsRead campaign, start some great discussions, and give away some fantastic prizes. If you’ve never been to a Twitter Party before, basically, just make sure you’re following the #DadsRead hashtag at 8 pm ET on the 12th, and you’ll be able to follow the conversation and tweet replies to our party hosts. For further details, follow @zoobeanforkids and @goodmenproject on Twitter.
5. ENCOURAGE YOUR KIDS TO READ, DAD
While, yes, we do want the #DadsRead campaign to change the conversation online about dads and reading, more than anything, we hope #DadsRead reinforces how important it is for fathers to be active participants in the reading lives of their children.
And it doesn’t need to be a one-size-fits-all solution. Yes, if you’re a dad and you enjoy reading, you should try to make time to read with your kids. But, if you’re a dad who’s uncomfortable reading out loud, maybe drive your kid to the library. Ask them questions about what they’re reading and, if they’re not reading, encourage them to find books that really speak to their interests. If your kid is a reluctant reader, let them see YOU reading, dads. Model the behavior that you want to see your kids emulating. Let them know that reading is just as important to DADS as it should be for KIDS.
We would love to get as many people as possible participating in the #DadsRead campaign this year. Reading is a wonderfully nourishing and inspirational gift that fathers can share with their kids and, for the dads that already do read with their children, we can’t think of a better time of year to say “Thanks, Dad” than Father’s Day.
Credit: Image—Kelly Sikkema/Flickr