Thursday, March 8, 2012


 LA Times Kid’s Reading Room

 It is hard enough these days to 
HOOK Kids on READING. . .
Without newspapers like the L A Times
killing off the popular


I have permission to post these comments PLUS the student's letter below.

Clarissa Ngo, Founder and Teacher of Magic Pen Kids,
sent the following to the people notified regarding the
LA Times Kids’ Reading Room

Hi everyone,
My students have been published in the Kids' Reading Room over 300 times since 2005, and written the main story nine times, so I have seen the inspiring effect being published in the L.A. Times has on children. I am very sad the Main Story is being discontinued and that only half as many poems will be published. I think if the L.A. Times wishes to lure kids to read the paper, the children should have more of a voice in the paper, not less.

            I am including a funny, touching letter from my student, Sydney, about the demise of KRR. Sydney says you can use it to save the Kids Reading Room.
           I have contacted a bunch of libraries in O.C. and L.A. about this issue.
          Clarissa Ngo - Teacher


Dear Mr. Hartenstin and Ms. Thomson:

Now that the Kids' Reading Room is mostly gone, my thoughts slump in plain wooden chairs with not a hook to hang them on. The silence slithers. Cardboard plasters my tongue as the gray overcast clouds cling to the neurons of my mind.

I am stomping bull mad about it, with a scorching scarlet thunderstorm on my tongue. How can this be? The Kids' Reading Room is practically the only place a kid can get published!

Without the Kids' Reading Room, my life is an empty ice cream cone, I think as I gaze at the quiet midnight sky. Why? Why do they think puzzles would be better than stories? My thoughts curl into balls, crawl, then limp from my brain like tired old men into the lonely Arctic where nothing lurks.

Every time I was published, it became one of those warm sweet red velvet cupcake days, when your thoughts skip over fields of golden sunflowers and the sky is as clear as a sheet of aquamarine glass.

If you bring back the Kids' Reading Room, my thoughts would whirl in weightless wonder. It will be butterfly weather in my heart.


Sydney, age 12 


 So wonderfully written for a 12 year old, and so sad
there can’t be more markets that encourage
imaginative minds like this.


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