One book, read book

  • Bethany Freudenthal / The Garden Island

    Raiatea Skabo, Anne Skabo and Emma Birag make books during the second annual Reading Resources Fair at the Lihue Public Library Wednesday.

  • Bethany Freudenthal / The Garden Island

    Victoria Lam is the Lihue Public Library’s children’s librarian.

  • Bethany Freudenthal / The Garden Island

    Margaret Higa, executive director of the Hawaii Branch of the International Dyslexia Association, says dyslexics are and can be successful adults.

  • Bethany Freudenthal / The Garden Island

    Victoria Birag helps daughter Abby make a book at the Reading Resources Fair Wednesday at the Lihue Public Library. Abby said she was going to write about flowers because flowers make people happy. Her favorite flower is the sunflower, she said.

LIHUE — “One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish” by Dr. Seuss is 6-year-old Raiatea Skabo’s favorite book.

The Kilauea School second-grader said she enjoys reading because it’s fun to sound out new words.

She was at the Lihue Public Library Wednesday making books with her mom and friends at the second Reading Resource Fair.

The library partnered with the Hawaii Branch of the International Dyslexia Association to make the fair possible.

The nonprofit association provides information and resources on dyslexia as well as promoting appropriate and effective teaching strategies for people who struggle to read, said Margaret Higa, executive director of the Hawaii Branch of the International Dyslexia Association.

An estimated 15 to 20 percent of the population struggle with symptoms of dyslexia, including inaccurate reading or spelling and difficulties with writing, Higa said.

October is Dyslexia Awareness Month.

Raiatea’s mom Anne Skabo said she reads to her daughter every day.

“She’ll pick up a book and read it, like when we came to library today her and her two friends were just reading by themselves in the corner.

“I think Raiatea loves books because she’s always been exposed to them ever since she was a baby, so when they can read by themselves it’s like they have this freedom to enter this imaginary world and it’s all theirs and they’ll never be bored,” she said.

Seven-year-old Emma Birag, who also attends Kilauea School, said she likes to learn how to read because it makes you smart and learning to read is fun.

“My favorite book is ‘The Foot Book’ because it’s funny and it has different sizes of feet. I think it’s really funny,” she said.

Birag said she is going to write about dragons in her book because they breathe fire, and “they’re very cool.”

Abby Birag came to the reading fair because she wanted to make crafts, and plans on writing about flowers in her book.

“I like sunflowers because they make me happy,” she said.

Leslye Fraiser, sixth-grade art teacher at Chiefess Kamakahelei Middle School, said she was helping kids make books during the fair because she also loves reading.

Fraiser encourages parents to read to their kids.

“It absolutely is a perfect parallel to their success in school,” she said.

Students who attended the fair got to participate in activities such as making books, reading games and a book swap.

For those who are dyslexic, Higa said there is always hope.

“It’s never too late. There’s always something that can be done,” she said. “We’re not saying it’s going to be easy, but definitely, we like to really promote people who are really dyslexics and how they’ve succeeded, so in our presentations we have chefs, we have actresses, news people, politicians, attorneys.”


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