The Saint Mary’s College Center for Environmental Literacy in Moraga, California, is the new home of the River of Words environmental poetry and visual arts program, which the Center for the Book has co-sponsored since its inception in 1995.
River of Words (www.riverofwords.org
) is a K-12 program founded by former U.S. Poet Laureate Robert Hass and the Center for Environmental Literacy’s new director, Pamela Michael. River of Words has been recognized for its “place-based” curriculum that engages students to create poetry and art based on the watersheds in their communities.
“The Center for the Book looks forward to continuing its relationship with River of Words in its new home at Saint Mary’s College,” said Center for the Book Director John Y. Cole. “The River of Words contest has always been one of our most popular programs. Its educational value makes it one of our most important programs and one of growing interest within our network of state Centers for the Book.”
Saint Mary’s Brother President Ronald Gallagher welcomed River of Words to the college and said, “The new Center for Environmental Literacy in the School of Education illustrates the college’s ongoing dedication to teaching sustainability.”
Since its creation by Congress in 1977 to “stimulate public interest in books and reading,” the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress (www.Read.gov/cfb/) has become a major national force for reading and literacy promotion. A public-private partnership, it sponsors educational programs that reach readers of all ages, nationally and internationally. The center provides leadership for 52 affiliated state centers for the book (including the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands) and nonprofit reading-promotion partners and plays a key role in the Library’s annual National Book Festival. It also oversees the Library’s Read.gov
website and administers the Library’s Young Readers Center.
Artwork by 10-year-old Sasini Navoda Wickramatunga, 2009 River of Words Finalist