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Author speaks on building a child’s brain

Dana Suskind, M.D., author of "Thirty Million Words: Building a Child’s Brain," speaks at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 24, in the auditorium at One Rotary Center, 1560 Sherman Ave. 

The event is sponsored by the Evanston Community Foundation’s Communityworks Initiative in partnership with the Evanston Public Library and Rotary International. 

Seating is limited and reservations, available online, are strongly recommended.

Suskind is professor of surgery at the University of Chicago, director of the Pediatric Cochlear Implant Program and founder and director of the Thirty Million Words Initiative.

Based on scientific research that shows the critical importance of early language exposure on the developing child, Thirty Million Words helps parents enhance their home language environment to optimize their child's brain development and ability to learn.

An evidence-based intervention, Thirty Million Words is supported by a broad coalition of public and private partnerships and is an extension of Dr. Suskind's Project ASPIRE, which she created to assure that her patients from disadvantaged backgrounds reached their full listening and spoken language potentials. 

“Advancing literacy is a priority in the eyes of many organizations based in Evanston, so we are pleased to join forces with the Evanston Public Library and Rotary International to introduce Dana Suskind’s message that parents can be actively involved in expanding their children’s life-long potential,” said ECF President and CEO Sara Schastok. “Suskind’s is one more voice supporting strategies that ECF’s Every Child Ready for Kindergarten initiative has promoted for the past decade to help close the achievement gap where it begins, in the first years of life.”

Copies of Suskind’s book Thirty Million Words: Building a Child’s Brain (Dutton/Penguin 2015) will be offered at a discounted rate at the event by Evanston bookseller Bookends and Beginnings and signed by the author.

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