LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - To help kick off reading week at Landmark Elementary School, Craig

O’Neill read the first chapter of “Bailey’s Story.”

It’s a book about a Golden Retriever named Bailey, who escapes a puppy mill and goes on an adventure.

After chapter one, when the kids were asked how many would love the buy the book and read more, every student raised their hand.

The kids then got a special surprise. They would each get a copy of the book to take home and read with their parents. It’s homework that promises to be entertaining and suspenseful, and who knows, maybe throw some more switches that turn on the love of reading in children.

Currently, only 40 percent of Arkansas students are reading at grade level. Laws won’t change that. Testing won’t change it and neither will money. The only thing that will change it is the love of books. When a child realizes the value, the numbers will rise.

For this to work, it’s going to take a lot of people. We are always looking for mentors, adults who can read to one or two children in first, second, or third grades, two hours a week. The organization putting together this army of world changers is ARKIDS READ.

If you’d like to join our reading army, click here.