Together, Genius Patch partnered with Mr. Banks’ nonprofit, Competitive By Nature to run a challenge for the month of March under its Junior Storyteller Program initiative called “I Dream of Characters that Look Like Me”. While Junior Storyteller is a program in which all children have an opportunity to find a love of creative writing, I Dream of Characters that Look Like Me is specifically focused on children of color. With a disparity in literacy rates and diversity in children’s literature, the initiative invites children of color to help lessen these gaps by becoming authors themselves.
For this partnership challenge, 1st and 2nd grade DC Prep students would, 1. participate in a fitness challenge led by Competitive by Nature, 2. read a “Mrs. Ashlee” book and write a book report for it and 3. write an original story. At the end of the challenge, “Mrs. Ashlee” and the Genius Patch Team would fly out to Washington D.C. from Detroit to celebrate all the contestants and announce a winner from 1st grade and a winner from 2nd grade.