PRIME TIME Programs wrap for summer in Maricopa County
“We were simply amazed by the children’s phenomenal insight relating to the humanities-based themes and how [the children] connected with the characters in the books. We also equally appreciated the parents’ personal narratives they shared in connection with the humanities content within the pages and beyond, inspiring critical thinking in their children.”
-Jared Stewart, PRIME TIME Storyteller
Arizona Humanities is pleased to announce the completion of two PRIME TIME Family Reading Time programs, both of which took place in the West Valley communities of Tolleson and Glendale. The PRIME TIME program allows families to come together for a meal and then read and discuss beloved, award-winning children’s books that explore humanities issues. Books include Horton Hears a Who, Click, Clack Moo: Cows That Type, and King Bidgood’s in the Bathtub.
Each week for six weeks, families convene to practice the skills of reading, listening, and critical thinking. Every PRIME TIME session is facilitated by a trained scholar and storyteller who, following dinner, read aloud selected books and then facilitate an engaging and productive discussion on the humanities issues as addressed in the books. The discussions are anchored by open-ended questions, like: What would you do in that situation? Have you ever felt like that character did? Such questions empower participants and encourage them to connect their personal experiences with those of the books’ characters.
The Southwest Institute for Families and Children (SWI), a local non-profit, was instrumental in ensuring the success of these most recent PRIME TIME programs, as SWI staff served as the on-the-ground facilitation team. The staff witnessed firsthand the transformation that often occurs with program participants, like that described by a father who participated in the program: “Before this program I would have to fight with my son to sit down and read a book…Now he is excited about reading and he’ll read as much as he can before bed, put a bookmark in the book and then continue the next day.”