For the sixth consecutive year, Pennsylvania's One Book, Every Young Child program will lead the way and highlight the importance of early literacy development in preschoolers ages 3 to 6. In its inaugural year, the One Book, Every Young Child program won the coveted, national John Cotton Dana Library Public Relations Award.

The selection for this year's program is Whose Shoes? A Shoe for Every Job by Stephen R. Swinburne. Published in 2010, this engaging book explores various occupations using simple text and colorful photographs. Whose Shoes? A Shoe for Every Job encourages young readers to guess which shoe matches which job.

The collaborating agencies involved with the program all believe strongly in supporting early literacy efforts. They are working together to develop a multifaceted program accessible to all areas and populations of the state. There are 560,000 children in the target age group, many of which are in the state's childcare facilities, Head Start programs, licensed preschools or kindergartens.

The One Book, Every Young Child program goes far beyond just giving parents and caregivers a book to read to preschoolers. The program's design is based on studies showing that simply reading a book is not enough. Adults must find ways to engage children in activities like talking about a book's cover and illustrations, discussing the action in the book and favorite parts, pretend play related to the book and more.

Through this program, adults with preschoolers in their lives will learn how they can support the development of literacy in preschool children. Because it is important for children to be prepared for school, One Book, Every Young Child will provide opportunities for adults to read aloud and share books, stories and related activities with preschoolers. These activities have been shown to be crucial to early learning.

One Book, Every Young Child information and program ideas have been developed by librarians and museum educators from across Pennsylvania to promote the value and benefits of reading early and often to preschoolers and to encourage family bonding through books and reading.

Throughout the year, there will be local events supporting the One Book, Every Young Child reading initiative, including limited days of author and illustrator visits at select locations across the state; library and museum programming for families; activities for parents, early care providers and educators available on this website; and state government VIPs across the state reading to children in libraries and other sites.

Each year, traveling trunks are developed by museum educators to help expand upon the concepts in the chosen book. Each trunk is filled with fun book-related puppets, games and iniatives for young children. In addition, each trunk includes a guide for librarians and educators that encourages use of the trunk contents in activities that are aligned with the Pennsylvania Early Learning Standards.

One Book, Every Young Child is made possible through a collaboration of the Pennsylvania Department of Education, Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare, Children's Museum of Pittsburgh, Please Touch Museum, State Museum of Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania Library Association, Pennsylvania Center for the Book, Pennsylvania Association for the Education of Young Children, The Pennsylvania Child Care Association, PennSERVE, HSLC/Access PA and Verizon.

For the sixth year the Verizon Foundation is proudly supporting the Pennsylvania One Book, Every Young Child program with a $40,000 grant as part of its commitment to unlock the promise of literacy. This grant will provide a copy of Whose Shoes? A Shoe for Every Job to more than 15,000 Pennsylvania childcare facilities, licensed preschools, Head Start programs and family literacy programs.

This program was supported in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act as administered by Pennsylvania's Office of Commonwealth Libraries.