Malcolm Mitchell has been cheered on the football field for seven years now, but there’s another place he’s being cheered just as enthusiastically -schools. Malcolm has been helping kids’ literacy since 2016, when he wrote the children’s book The Magician’s Hat. The New England Patriots receiver’s own experiences are what motivate him. As a kid and into high school, Malcolm wasn’t reading on the level he could’ve been. Going to the University of Georgia, he knew he had to get better, so he joined a book club to step up his reading game. He got better at it and wanted to help kids in the same position he had been in.
Malcolm came to Atlanta recently to visit several schools. My organization, Page Turners, has the same goal as Malcolm: to help kids read more, and better. At the same time, Parker Poe, a law firm, was having a community service day. They decided to also help kids in literacy, so the three organizations worked together. The law firm bought the kids copies of Malcolm’s book and a few others in advance. In the school auditorium, I introduced Malcolm, he told the students about how he liked reading, and together we read the book aloud. Later, the Parker Poe people went into the classrooms and read different books out loud to the younger grades.
Speaking to an auditorium full of kids was a new experience for me. I was a bit nervous, but Malcolm and everyone else who spoke made it easier than I expected. Children’s literacy is super important and the three-way partnership – with Malcolm’s answer for model, Parker Poe giving support, and PageTurners organizing the whole thing – will hopefully open kids minds to reading, like it did for me.
Leave a Reply