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Maria Salvadore

Reading Rockets' children's literature expert, Maria Salvadore, brings you into her world as she explores the best ways to use kids' books both inside — and outside — of the classroom.

Super Ambassadors for young people and reading!

January 12, 2012

What do a red cape, a magic wand and a light sword represent? Each seems to be a sign of magic, heroics, something more than mere human, right?

What happens when the writers who hold these objects come together in one room? They become the superheroes and spokespeople to let the world know about the importance of reading.

These are the Super National Ambassadors for Young People's Literature! Together, their power can change the world! And that's just what current and former Ambassadors have set out to do.

Three National Ambassadors for Young People's Literature

Newly inaugurated Ambassador Walter Dean Myers flanked by outgoing Ambassador Katherine Paterson, and Jon Scieszka, the first Ambassador, talked to a standing-room-only crowd at the Washington, D.C. independent bookstore Politics and Prose Bookstore on Tuesday.

They talked about the power of reading. Each shared personal stories about their passion and power of story and reading. They have each seen the power of story, how books change lives — even save lives.

It's a big job to catch and keep the country's attention to remind them of something as seemingly simple yet powerful as the power of reading, books, and libraries. Learning to read requires time, patience and resources. Libraries have to be open, materials accessible. It's a never-ending job — but one with endless rewards.

I am confident that the current Ambassador — with the support of his predecessors and of teachers, parents, and others — is more than up for the position.

So as your work continues, congratulations again, Mr. Ambassador! We're behind you 100%!

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"You know you’ve read a good book when you turn the last page and feel a little as if you have lost a friend." — Paul Sweeney