National Endowment for the Arts Announces More Than $3.7 Million in Grants
Washington, DC - The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) just may have to change the name of its literature program The Big Read to The Biggest Read. June 23rd the NEA announced that 269 nonprofits, including arts, culture, and science organizations; libraries; and municipalities will receive grants totaling $3,742,765 to host Big Read celebrations between September 2009 and June 2010. The Big Read brings communities together to read, discuss, and celebrate one of 30 selections from U.S. and world literature. The 2009-2010 Big Read grantees represent 44 states, the District of Columbia, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Since the 2006 pilot program with ten participating organizations, the NEA has given more than 800 grants to support local Big Read projects.
The selected organizations will receive Big Read grants ranging from $2,500 to $20,000 to promote and carry out community-based programs. Participating communities also receive high-quality, free-of-charge educational materials to supplement each title. Reader’s Guides include features such as author biographies, historical context for the book, and discussion questions. Teacher’s Guides are developed with National Council of Teachers of English and State Language Arts standards in mind and include lesson plans, essay topics, and classroom handouts. The Big Read Audio Guides feature readings from the novel along with commentary from renowned artists, educators, and public figures such as Sam Waterston and Aimee Mann, and Big Read authors such as Cynthia Ozick and Tobias Wolff.
To learn more about The Big Read, please visit the www.neabigread.org.
~Pat Ryan, Jefferson County Library Cooperative
Stay tuned for Homewood Public Library's plans to celebrate The Big Read with The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain. We will have activities for all ages!