The family bookshelf is getting tired. Even if your children ask for the same story to be read dozens of times (and by now, you seem to know it by heart), there comes a time when a new story is needed to keep everyone entertained.
In the era of COVID-19, celebrities and local organizations are stepping in to give parents a much-needed moment of peace instead of continuing to flip the pages. Below, find former first lady Michelle Obama, country music star Dolly Parton, World Series champs Washington Nationals and even local sheriffs (in their uniforms too!) from the Alexandria Sheriff’s Department hosting virtual story times for children near and far.
Alexandria Sheriff’s Department Story Time for Students
Local sheriff’s, police officers and first responders have been working around the clock during COVID-19 to ensure a safe community in Northern Virginia, but the Alexandria Sheriff’s Department wants to let kids know, it’s still OK to have some fun, even in uniform! Tune into the sheriff’s department Facebook page for a weekly story time with a local sheriff, such as Deputy Tim Wauhop reading Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss, and another reading Big Pumpkin by Erica Silverman. The department will still be fighting crime and supporting local neighborhoods, but the police officers can bring some calm entertainment to your household too.
Dolly Parton’s Goodnight with Dolly
“Is there anything we can all agree on? Yes: Dolly Parton,” reads a November headline from The New York Times, even before the beloved country music star took to YouTube to air a weekly story time for kids around the world during the pandemic. Parton’s virtual story time, Goodnight with Dolly, is an extension of her many children’s reading initiatives, including her Imagination Library, which has sent over 1 million books to kids worldwide. The show has produced six episodes already, with the star reading titles such as Last Stop on Market Street and Llama Llama Red Pajama, and more to come. Viewers can tune in at 7 p.m. once a week to hear a hand-chosen story, and pajamas just like Dolly’s are encouraged!
Mondays with Michelle Obama
PBS Kids has tapped the shoulder of former first lady Michelle Obama to host a weekly story time for children during school closures and social distancing. The readalongs take place on Mondays at noon, and are available for watching any time thereafter. So far, Obama has read Miss Maple’s Seeds, There’s a Dragon in Your Book and The Gruffalo, and children can look forward to more weekly story times in the future, with books announced on PBS Kids’ social media. If your kids watch them all and are patiently waiting for more, the company has also featured American novelist Brad Meltzer and zoologist Martin Kratt for additional virtual story times.
Washington Nationals Reading Resources
Just a handful of months ago in 2019, Ryan Zimmerman was celebrating on the field with his teammates for the Washington Nationals first World Series Championship win. As the new season’s opening date has been postponed indefinitely, he’s reaching Nats fans both young and old in an entirely new way. Catch Zimmerman and his teammates (including the newcomer Will Harris, among others) reading their children’s favorite bedtime stories on social media and the team’s website. Zimmerman has currently recorded two story times (one with his oldest daughter reading How to Catch a Unicorn), with more to come. Until baseball starts up once again, everyone can enjoy their favorite World Series champions from the comfort of their homes, with fun stories too!.
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