Reading Without Walls challenges young readers to diversify their reading choices. The challenge celebrates reading by encouraging readers to:
- Read a book about a character who doesn’t look like you or live like you.
- Read a book about a topic you don’t know very much about.
- Read a book in a format that you don’t normally read for fun; a chapter book, a graphic novel, a book in verse, etc.
When Gene Luen Yang was named National Ambassador to Young People’s Literature last year—the first graphic novelist given the honor—one of his primary projects was the Reading Without Walls program, which encourages children to read outside of their comfort zone. “Walls are only a big thing if you’ve never crossed them or scaled them,” he told The Washington Post at the time. “There are a lot of walls between cultures that reading can help bridge; reading is a way to get to know people on a deeper level.” Now, as he begins the second year of his two-year term, Yang is working to finalize the program and launch it as an annual event this April. (http://www.tor.com/2017/01/27/gene-luen-yang-launches-annual-reading-without-walls-program-for-young-readers/)