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The UPS Store Small Business Blog
  • 01 December 2017
  • Tracy Spahr

The Importance of Childhood Literacy

Children are constantly learning, right from birth. Their daily experiences help to shape a foundation for their development and growth for years to come. Whether they hear a new song on the radio during a car ride, watch others dance to music or read a book aloud with their parents, every interaction makes a difference. As we look to our future, childhood experiences present the greatest opportunity to help our youth succeed.bc_20171204_literacy-program.jpg

Developing literacy skills early makes it easier for children to learn to read in school. Reading is proven to be an essential skill to success in school and children who enter school that already know how to read have an advantage. This advantage carries with them throughout their school years and eventually into their adult lives and career paths. Reading aloud to young children is not only one of the best activities to stimulate language and cognitive skills; it also builds motivation, curiosity, and memory.

Five easy ways to help a child develop literacy skills are: talking, reading, singing, writing and playing. These actions help young children learn and become familiar with words, numbers, actions, feelings, emotions and imagination!

Studies indicate that there is a strong correlation between poverty and illiteracy. While getting a shiny new toy at Christmas can certainly brighten a child’s world and put a smile on his or her face, it doesn’t provide long-lasting benefits or enable that child to break the cycle of poverty.

Supporting literacy is the perfect way to provide children the tools needed to help them break the cycle of poverty.

According to, students who don't read proficiently by the 3rd grade are four times likelier to drop out of school.

The UPS Store joined forces with the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation and created the Toys for Tots Literacy Program to promote literacy among our nation’s under-privileged children. The mission of the program is to offer our nation’s most economically disadvantaged children the ability to compete academically and succeed in life by providing them direct access to resources that will enhance their ability to read and communicate effectively.

Toys for Tots Literacy Program The literacy program uses 100 percent of each dollar donated at The UPS Store locations to purchase books for less fortunate children in local communities across the United States. According to the Scholastic Kids & Family Reading Report™: 6th Edition, lower income families have one-third of the amount of children’s books in the home compared to higher income families.

Since the program launched in 2008, UPS and The UPS Store network have raised more than $4 million dollars to purchase books for children in need. As a result, the literacy program has distributed more than 39.4 million books to children across the United States.

To make a contribution to support literacy, visit The UPS Store near you or visit

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