Politics aside, none of these ads is surprising given the times I have lived through over the years I have spent in education. I have survived several reading wars. I have seen ad after ad after ad touting the magic program, strategy, approach, book, plan, etc. that would end, once and for all, kids who did not read on level every single year (according to some testing measure). I have seen NCLB "ended" and supplanted with another acronym.
But somewhere out there, there are voices. Voices of educators talking about sharing books with kids, putting books into the hands of readers, spending money from their own pockets to develop classroom libraries. If only they could afford ads, can you imagine those ads, folks? They are walking ads; they walk the walk and talk the talk and, in doing so, they speak louder than those corporations can ever do. Their actions shout above the cacophony of the snake oil salesmen hoping to steal another chunk of money from kids and classrooms, and educators.
So, I imagine these ads in my mind's eye. And I take heart.