Levar Burton Reading Rainbow Web app raises $1 million-plus on K - WICU12 HD WSEE Erie, PA News, Sports, Weather and Events

Levar Burton Reading Rainbow Web app raises $1 million-plus on Kickstarter in one day

Updated:
A screenshot of the Reading Rainbow Kickstarter page on May 29, 2014. A screenshot of the Reading Rainbow Kickstarter page on May 29, 2014.

By Mike Flacy
Provided by


Building off the success of the Reading Rainbow iPad application that launched two years ago, Levar Burton launched a Kickstarter campaign earlier today that will bring the application to the Web as well as offer classrooms subscription-based supplemental learning tools that include interactive books and video field trips. In less than twelve hours, Burton surpassed the $1 million funding goal and is now quickly pushing toward $2 million with 35 days still left in the Kickstarter campaign. 

Speaking about the importance of Reading Rainbow, Burton said “I believe that every child has a right, and a need, to be literate. We have a responsibility to prepare our children…and right now, the numbers show that we, as a society, are failing in that responsibility. Right now, 1 out of every 4 children in America will grow up illiterate…Now, I am hoping you will join me on my mission: to bring Reading Rainbow back for every child, everywhere.” When the program was on television between 1983 and 2006, Reading Rainbow won 26 Emmys as well as a Peabody award.

According to the project details, the funds will be used to build a Web version of the Reading Rainbow application that can be accessed on any desktop or laptop computer. In addition, a specialized version of the application will be created for the classroom with tools for teachers to use. While this version will be provided to schools on a premium subscription basis, a large portion of the funds will be used to subsidize the cost of the application for at least 1,500 needy schools around the country. That number is likely to increase as additional funding stretch goals are met over the life of the Kickstarter campaign.

In order to encourage more backers to contribute to the campaign, Burton is offering up his time for video messages, custom voicemails, video chats, group picnics and private dinners as well as backing levels related to his time spent playing Geordi La Forge on the popular television series Star Trek: The Next Generation. Interestingly, the more expensive backing levels offer the opportunity to purchase a year-long subscription for a classroom or even an entire school. 

Of course, Burton also mentioned that children have transitioned from watching educational programming on television to spending more time using educational applications on tablets like the iPad. According to Burton, kids are reading approximately 139,000 books per week using the iPad application. Speaking about the production value of the application, Burton said “I’m really proud of the way we’ve translated the television show into a tablet app for kids, The nature of the show really lends itself ideally to the digital realm.”

This type of Kickstarter campaign is less about providing a specific product to a backer and more about supporting an expansion of the application to reach more children around the world. It’s likely that many of the project backers are young adults that grew up with the programming during the late eighties and the 1990's. After the project hit the $1 million goal, Burton tweeted “#grateful” to his Twitter followers. He also thanked popular Twitter user and former Star Trek: The Next Generation star Wil Wheaton for his financial support in adopting a classroom. 


This article was originally posted on Digital Trends

Content provided by
INFORMATIONAL DISCLAIMER The information contained on or provided through this site is intended for general consumer understanding and education only and is not intended to be and is not a substitute for professional financial or accounting advice. Always seek the advice of your accountant or other qualified personal finance advisor for answers to any related questions you may have. Use of this site and any information contained on or provided through this site is at your own risk and any information contained on or provided through this site is provided on an "as is" basis without any representations or warranties.
Powered by WorldNow
3514 State St. Erie, PA 16508
Newsroom: (814)454-8812
Toll Free: 1(800)454-8812
Business offices: (814)454-5201
WICU FCC Filing
WSEE FCC Filing
Share:
Share Stories
Submit your stories to our site!
Share Photos
Share your photos in our community galleries
Mobile:
Mobile Site
Be sure to stay constantly updated with the power of WICU12 and WSEE at your fingertips
Free Android App
Free iPhone App
Free iPad App
Storm Tracker App
Droid
iPhone
iPad
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WICU. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.
                   WICU/WSEE - 3514 State Street Erie, PA 16508 - (814) 454-5201 - info@wicu12.com