“Butterfly in the sky, I can fly twice as high…” If you are in your head singing the next line and having a nostalgic flashback to good books and cheesy 80s clothing, then this will probably bring you the same warm and fuzzy feeling it brought me. Reading Rainbow is back ya’ll!

For those of you who missed it, Reading Rainbow was one of the foundations of my childhood TV time. From 1983-2006, Levar Burton and his cast of zany friends cultivated a love of reading by encouraging children everywhere to “take a look” in a book. During it’s heydey it raked in 26 Emmy Awards and 1 Peabody for quality programming. 

Unbeknownst to me, two years ago LeVar Burton put together a Reading Rainbow App for ipad and now he’s launched a KickstarterCampaign asking for $1,000,000 to not only bring back Reading Rainbow, but to make it free and assessable to children everywhere.   
The plan is to first make Reading Rainbow available on the web, and then create interactive classrooms. This beautifully coincides with a national push to diversify children’s books.  From May 1-3, you might have noticed a lot of people on Facebook, particularly librarians holding up signs stating the need for diverse books.Turns out this wasn’t just some Seattle thing, but a national campaign to bring awareness to the fact that while our population is increasingly diverse, the main characters in children’s books remain as white as before.
So here is my call to action all you Black Girl Nerdy writers out there. Let’s do this! I would like to form a cohort of black girl nerds to turn our nerdy girl stories into children’s books. Then we can lobby LeVar Burton into having a special black girl nerds edition of Reading Rainbow. Are you in?

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Reagan Jackson is a writer, artist, YA fiction aficionado, afro-punk, international educator, and community organizer based in Seattle, WA. To read more check out her column in the Seattle Globalist. You can also find her most Wednesday nights at the Rain City Poetry Slam.