By Dr. Marciene Mattleman

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – John Kelly remembers when he first learned to read. And judging from his photo in The Washington Post, that was many years ago.

While Kelly’s mom always read to him (she loved “A Child’s Garden of Verses“) and he learned the alphabet letters, the symbols had no meaning. But one day, driving along, he looked from the back seat and saw G-A-S, T-A-N-K and F-O-O-D. Kelly says he’s not exaggerating that he felt a whooshing in his brain when he understood that the letters meant something,..that this new skill was nothing you could just turn off…that life would be changed forever.

I don’t remember when I first learned to read, although I can remember mouthing words by memory as my mom read each night, and I’m very conscious of the fact that most kids in Philly today are less likely to have those experiences.

Stop in to your local library and find out where you might help someone learn to read.

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