Cathy Trementozzi is a Human Resources and Client Services executive in New Jersey and a Regional WRADvocate Ambassador. She is an avid reader, a literacy advocate, and a great friend of LitWorld.
We asked Cathy why she celebrates World Read Aloud Day, and to share her special plans to Read If Forward for WRAD. Here is what she had to say:
"Reading is a skill that doesn’t come easily to everyone. I know this because it didn’t come easily to me.
As a preschooler, I looked forward to weekly story hour at the public library. As the librarian read aloud, I would allow myself to be transported on adventurous journeys where I would meet new people, explore new places, and learn new things. The way she read inspired me, and I couldn’t wait until the day that I could do the same.
In first grade I was in awe of a classmate who read well beyond his years. He confidently used different voices for each character and engaged his audience. Again, I was inspired and looked forward to the day that I, too, could read.
Our teacher separated the class into reading groups, each titled with bird names (Blue Birds, Red Birds, and Yellow Birds). When called, we would flap our wings and quickly “fly” to our nest to read. The flock names were a nice way of grouping us into our reading skill level—below average, average or above average. I longed to be in the group with the above-average birds.
I took my goal seriously and learned to read, as did many of my classmates, with the classic Dick and Jane readers. “See Dick run. See Jane run. See Dick and Jane run. See Spot run.” I didn’t like getting up in front of my classmates to read aloud, but even at that young age I knew it was what I had to do to become a better reader.
Curious George, Clifford the Big Red Dog, The Pokey Little Puppy, and Madeline set me on a path to discover the joy of reading.
Writer Alberto Manguel said, “At one magical instant in your early childhood, the page of a book—that string of confused, alien ciphers—shivered into meaning. Words spoke to you, gave up their secrets; at that moment, whole universes opened. You became, irrevocably, a reader."
I cherish that moment when I became the reader that I longed to be. I celebrate World Read Aloud Day for the many children waiting for their moment and for the people, like me, whose moments permeate every aspect of our lives."
--Cathy Trementozzi, WRADvocate