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UCF Reading Camps

Literacy Champion Spotlight



The UCF College of Education, in collaboration with the City of Orlando, operates a free Reading Camp Program in downtown Orlando that has helped thousands of children become better readers since its inception 13 years ago.

The camps are held on Saturday mornings during the fall and spring semesters and daily during the month of June at two community centers located in the historic African-American neighborhood of Parramore, a low-income area where 73 percent of the children live in poverty.

The tutoring sessions are tailored for kindergarten through grade 6 students, who are divided into small reading groups, with a UCF student teacher assigned to each as a tutor. The sessions last one hour and 15 minutes and average 60 to 70 children per week.

While their kids are being tutored, parents participate in a Parent Education Program designed to help them improve their children’s reading abilities at home.

The personalized tutoring – two to three children per group – has produced outstanding results: at least 33 percent of the children who attend regularly raise their reading rate by one level, according to Dr. Timothy R. Blair, founder and director of the reading camps. Nothing matches the effectiveness of our “small group instruction,” he says.

Thanks to the efforts of the Reading Camps, kids who once stayed away from books are now developing a passion for reading. Through its decade-long commitment to disadvantaged children in the Parramore district, the UCF Reading Camp has truly distinguished itself as a Champion of Literacy.

For more information about UCF Reading Camps, visit

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Whoopi Goldberg         Amar'e Stoudemire
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