NBC's 'Today' Launches 'Al's Book Club For Kids' This Friday, April 27

Al Roker Catches the "Scholastic Summer Reading BUZZ!(TM)" to Get Kids

Reading Four or More Books during Summer Break

Apr 25, 2007, 01:00 ET from Scholastic from ,NBC

    NEW YORK, April 25 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Summer is all about fun
 for kids, but it is also an important time to keep kids' reading skills
 sharp. To avoid what some call the "Summer Slide"- a common loss of skills
 attributed to being out of school for a period of time -- "Today" is
 launching "Al's Book Club For Kids," a series to keep kids engaged in
 reading all summer long. This new "Today" series coincides with the
 Scholastic Summer Reading BUZZ!(TM) Campaign to help get kids reading "Four
 or More" books to combat the summer slide.
     On Friday, April 27, "Al's Book Club For Kids" will kick-off and the
 first of four books that kids can read and discuss over the summer on
 "Today" will be announced. At the same time, the Scholastic Summer Reading
 BUZZ! gets underway - a campaign that gets kids reading and champions the
 important role parents, educators and librarians - and even Al Roker - can
 play in helping kids find books they will love to read. According to The
 Kids and Family Reading Report(TM), kids' reading frequency dramatically
 declines at the age of eight and one of the main factors for this is
 because they can't find books they like to read.
     Each month during the summer, Al and a group of young book club
 members, ages 9-11, will meet in Rockefeller Plaza for their monthly book
 club meeting to talk about the selected book and ask questions of the
 author. "Al's Book Club For Kids" plans to meet four times, and kids
 everywhere are encouraged to visit "Today" on the Plaza when the club
 convenes and bring a copy of Al's monthly pick to be signed by the author.
 Stay tuned for date announcements.
     "Al's Book Club For Kids" will have extensive online components at
 Todayshow.com and scholastic.com/summerreading. Parents and kids alike from
 across the country can be part of the club by e-mailing questions for the
 authors, who will answer a select few live on "Today." Todayshow.com will
 continue the discussions with the author online after each book club
 segment airs. In addition, at Scholastic.com/summerreading (launching May
 15) kids can access fun book-themed activities, join a book community and
 create their own reading log. Parents, teachers and librarians can also
 find expert advice on reading and age-appropriate summer book lists for
 kids in English and Spanish, as well as downloadable materials that will
 help engage kids in reading.
     "With so many amazing books out there for kids, and with so many of our
 viewers being parents, we are thrilled to offer a fun, interactive way to
 read with the kids in our audience all summer long," said Jaclyn Levin,
 Senior Publishing Producer, NBC News.
     "Scholastic is proud to join with 'Today' to promote summer reading,"
 stated Francie Alexander, Scholastic Chief Academic Officer. "Al Roker is
 likely to do for kids' reading what Oprah has done for adults' reading!"
     About NBC News' "Today"
     NBC News pioneered the morning news program when it launched "Today"
 over 55 years ago, with Dave Garroway as host. The three-hour live
 broadcast provides the latest in domestic and international news, weather
 reports and interviews with newsmakers from the worlds of politics,
 business, media, entertainment and sports. After more than 48 years of the
 standard two-hour format, the third hour was launched in October of 2000,
 making "Today" the only three-hour national morning show broadcast. The
 program is unparalleled in its ratings dominance in the morning news arena,
 serving as America's overwhelming favorite for more than eleven consecutive
     About Scholastic
     Scholastic Corporation (Nasdaq:   SCHL) is the world's largest publisher
 and distributor of children's books and a leader in educational technology.
 Scholastic creates quality educational and entertaining materials and
 products for use in school and at home, including children's books,
 magazines, technology-based products, teacher materials, television
 programming, film, videos and toys. The Company distributes its products
 and services through a variety of channels, including proprietary
 school-based book clubs, school- based book fairs, and school-based and
 direct-to-home continuity programs; retail stores, schools, libraries and
 television networks; and the Company's Internet site, www.scholastic.com.

SOURCE Scholastic; NBC