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Local educator earns national honors

Special to The Union

Eleven years and over a thousand young readers later, Jerry Martin of Grass Valley, California, has won a national award for his program, “Saluting New Readers.” Every year the National Retired Teachers Association, a division of the AARP, gives this prestigious award to three individuals from across the U.S. who make significant contributions while volunteering with children.

“Saluting New Readers” uses TV in a new way: Instead of being spectators, children actually participate, with each child starring as a reader.

Says Martin, “SNR” stimulates children to value reading, builds genuine self-esteem, gives kids experience with public speaking in a relaxed, supportive context, and involves parents in school activities.

He said that primary teachers find that students develop solid reading skills while practicing for the big day when the camcorder, operated by one volunteer, arrives in the classroom. Later, these same readers are thrilled when watching themselves, with family, at home, on non-commercial, local public access TV.

“SNR” is part of a book Martin has written: “Active Video: A Teaching Tool for Every Classroom.” It is based on the notion that a trained volunteer with a simple video camcorder is all we need to inspire young students.

Martin is actively seeking an appropriate collaborating nonprofit organization to bring this program to classrooms throughout California. Contact him at (530) 477-6282 or

E-mail jerrymartin1942@sbcglobal.net; visit the Web at http://www.saluting-new-readers.org.

– Special to The Union

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