I see LeVar Burton’s face or hear his familiar voice and I’m transported back to my childhood. I adored Reading Rainbow. As a writer and bibliophile, I wonder if my early love affair with this show contributed to my obsession with books. I can sing the theme song from memory. I was crushed when I learned it was no longer on the air. I wanted my own children to enjoy the same, sweet program that taught me the value in reading.
If you’ve never heard of Reading Rainbow, I’m so sorry. You missed out! Each episode centered around a theme and usually began with a children’s book narrated by a celebrity; Bill Cosby was one such example. Next, Burton would travel to various places talking to people about their work and expertise. The final segment of the show, Book Reviews, featured children giving reviews of books they liked. I loved Burton’s tagline, “But you don’t have to take my word for it.” I would always search for the books they mentioned at the library.
Lucky for me, Reading Rainbow has an app! I just downloaded it to my iPad and while it’s not quite the Reading Rainbow I remember, it get’s the job done. It allows children to read books, explore video trips with Burton, and earn rewards for reading, but it is not free. 😦