The White House
President George W. Bush
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For Immediate Release
Office of the First Lady
May 29, 2007

Mrs. Bush's Statement During a Visit to Washington Middle School for Girls
Washington Middle School for Girls
Washington, D.C


9:20 A.M. EDT

MRS. BUSH: Good morning, everybody. How are you all? Mary, thank you so much for letting me visit and present Emma Roberts, who is the star of the new Nancy Drew movie that I hope you all will be able to see. It's released when? June 15th?

MS. ROBERTS: June 15th.

MRS. BUSH: June 15th the new movie will come out. And actually, Nancy Drew was a favorite book of mine when I was yours. And if you have a copy of a Nancy Drew book, you can see that there are 57 titles -- 57 different books about Nancy Drew. So if you like reading about a girl detective, you might this summer go to your library and check out Nancy Drews. And if you're a really, really fast reader, you could read all 57. (Laughter.) But maybe you ought to just try to read at least three books this summer.

It's really important, as all of you know, to keep reading all year. Don't just limit your reading to your school year, because if you do, when you start school again after three months off this summer, you'll be behind. And it's especially important for your little brothers or sisters, if you have any little brothers or sisters who are new readers, then make an effort this summer to read with them every day, because new readers especially need to practice reading all summer, or when they start school, they almost have to start over. Do a lot of you have little brothers or sisters?

And one thing that's really fun about reading is talking about books with your friends. So I hope you'll ask your librarian, Ms. Johnson, or you'll ask Sister Mary or you'll ask your pastor or your coaches or your parents or other people that you see this summer to recommend their favorite books to you, and then when you go to the library, you can check out their favorite book and read it, and then have a chance to have something fun and interesting to talk about.

Reading -- every grade that you go up every year, your reading ability counts more and more towards your academic success. By the time you're in high school, almost 90 percent of your school work depends on your reading ability. If you're a great reader, you'll be great in every subject. You can read history, you can read science, you can read every subject. If you have trouble reading, it's harder to be excellent academically in every subject. So I want to encourage you to be sure and read all summer.

Have some of you already read Nancy Drew? Yes? Okay, well, Emma, as you know, is a trained actress. So she and I are going to do a little reading from Nancy Drew, the very first book, The Secret of the Old Clock, the Nancy Drew book. And I'm not a trained actress, but I am a librarian. (Laughter.) So I did read lots of stories to people over the years.

END 9:23 A.M. EDT

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