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By John Ostapkovich

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – A well-known children’s book author wants more children to read, so she’s involved in two projects with the hopes of accomplishing that.

Mary Pope Osborne is out with her 50th Magic Tree House book, but she says reading mastery by third grade is so important and more needs to be done:

“I walked on a plane the other day and every single child was on a device. It kind of breaks my heart ’cause usually they’re playing games, they’re not reading novels. To read a book, to really put yourself in a book requires a lot on your part. It helps your brain grow. It helps your creativity grow. It helps your imagination.”

Osborne says reading learned young is reading learned best:

“The brain is co-creating with an author ’cause the child has to see things in their head and so they’re working on your words. Some day, a grown-up is going to pick up a Magic Tree House and say, ‘boy this is so thin. I thought there was so much more here.’ Well, the secret is, it was going in in their brain.”

So Osborne has both a plan to get books into the hands of kids who don’t have any, and a partnership with JetBlue which offers a chance at a $5,000 college scholarship and spurs a second avenue of book donations.

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