Hair Cutting Courses In Reading – Choose a book and read to your hairdresser, he takes some money from the top: Ed is a great way for children to brush up on their reading skills? Why, study for hair, of course. That’s the idea at a hair salon in Ypsilanti, Mich. Oh, and in Houston, Dubuque, Iowa and Columbus, Ohio.
Joseph Jason, 7, reads a book to Ryan Griffin at Fuller Cut in Ypsilanti, Mich., as part of the barbershop’s literacy program. Hide caption by Keith Jason / Courtesy of Keith Jason
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Joseph Jason, 7, reads a book to Ryan Griffin at Fuller Cut in Ypsilanti, Mich., as part of the barbershop’s literacy program.
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Joseph Jason came to the Fuller Cut barber shop for one reason: baby mohawk. It’s almost second grade picture day and he wants to look good. He climbs into an antique wicker chair and asks the hairdresser for a new “do.”
“It’s long at the top and short at the bottom, and lines that run in a diagonal line where the top should be,” explains the 7-year-old.
Joseph had come to get a Mohawk, but his father, Keith Jason, chose this barbershop over all others in Ypsilanti, a working-class town just outside of Ann Arbor, Michigan, for a different reason. At Fuller Cut, kids get $2 off if they read a book aloud to their hairdresser.
You know, maybe one day some kid will grow up to be a journalist, a writer, and say, “You know, when I was little, my hairdresser used to make me read.” “
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“It’s a strange thing,” says Jason. “It helps my pocket, it helps their education, and it helps prepare a better future for them, so I love it.”
This program came to Ypsilanti because of Ryan Griffin, who has been cutting mohawks, falcons and falcons here for 20 years. He says he first read about a similar literacy program in Harlem, New York, so he asked the chief if they could replicate it. Within weeks, people in the area donated books to the cause.
“We get compliments from teachers who say it does so much for these kids during the school year,” he says.
But here at Fuller Cut, just reading the book out loud isn’t enough. Children, Griffin explains, are asked questions by their teacher to make sure they understand what they are reading.
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Josiah and Joseph study for their hair at Fuller Cut in Ypsilanti, Mich. As part of the barbershop’s literacy program, children receive a $2 discount for having their barber read a book. Hide caption by Keith Jason / Courtesy of Keith Jason
“Any help these kids can get to read and understand is great. You know maybe one day a kid will grow up to be a journalist, a writer, and say, ‘You know what, when When I was young, my hairdresser used to make me study. “
“We’re going lion hunting,” he reads. “We’re going to take a big one. We’re not going to be afraid, we’ve been there before.”
Meanwhile, Keith encourages Jason’s youngest son, Josiah, to pick up a book while they wait their turn.
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Many young black boys come to Fuller Cut to get trim, and the store tries to reflect that in its book selection. Books about black baseball players and black child detectives make many titles.
Over a hundred kids have studied at Ypsilanti Barbers this past year. Some are more willing than others.
Giorgio Pitts, 9, is in fifth grade this year. He doesn’t seem very enthusiastic about reading. His father says that Giorgio would rather play video games, but he takes his son a book anyway. His choice?
He might not like the reading part, but the part where he gets $2 from the hairdresser to put in his piggy bank? This part is very good. Hairstylist Gregory Farris cuts hair during James Matthews Elementary School’s first annual Mentoring, Literacy and Social Support event put together by social worker Nikita Lowe.
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Buzzcuts, Barbers and Books, an imaginative program recently started by Nikita Lowe, a social worker at James Matthews Elementary School, turned a classroom into a barber shop, encouraging reading in kindergarten through fifth grade. .
Awaiting their turn in the barber’s chair last Monday were fourth-graders Terion McCrell and Debreon Davis, who picked up some literature to keep them occupied. In the background, a conversation between the barber and the students about their future can be heard along with the sound of electric clippers.
Lowe said she recognized the role of the hair salon in the African-American community and knew it would be a good fit for the first mentoring, literacy and social support event she decided to orchestrate.
“Our goal was to reach the SMART goal of 50 percent grade-level reading while promoting mentorship and boosting self-esteem because we know that when you look good, you feel good,” Lowe said.
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Eight local barbers volunteered under the direction of Gregory Farris, owner of Pine Bluff All Stars Barbershop at 1405 West Sixth Ave. Farris joined his barbering society, Kappa Upsilon Tau, and used the opportunity to give back to the frat brothers by giving free haircuts to all students at the elementary school.
“We sent permission slips home with all of our students,” said Lowe, who added that 45 students received haircuts of their choice.
“I used to enjoy cutting hair at school,” said third-grader King Joshua Hampton Henry. I had to read books and talk about what I wanted to be when I grew up. “It was a lot of fun. I hope they come back.”
Jamaris Boston, a fifth-grader, couldn’t believe his eyes when he walked into a classroom designed like a hair salon.
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“When I got a haircut, it felt good because I didn’t have to brush my hair to make it look better,” Boston said. “I was surprised that the barber came to the school to cut it. I thought it was a dream.
Finally it was time to sit down in Mackerel’s chair. Barber James Smith wrapped Mackerel in a custom Los Angeles Lakers barber’s cap emblazoned with NBA superstar LeBron James.
Mackerel smiled, especially when he looked in the mirror and saw his custom haircut with the Nike logo.
Barber Kendrick Harris, who cuts hair at King Kutz, said he was able to observe the different personalities of the students.
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“This is the right age to guide the youth before it is too late,” he said. “I liked them all, but I felt bad hearing that some of them had never been to a hair salon.”
Lowe, a mother of two boys, said she knows how expensive haircuts can be for her sons and husband at $25 to $30 each.
“Just imagine a parent who has more than one child who needs a haircut,” Lowe said. “This initiative alleviated some of the stress financially for some of our parents.”
Lowe said the haircut has also boosted the confidence of young people because bullying has become a problem in many schools because of the image. Lowe said he also noticed a big difference in his students’ behavior after getting haircuts and talking to the barber.
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“I had the best experience because I got it for free. My haircuts are really clean and I get to spend time with the teachers,” said sophomore Ja’Cion Woods.
“I told the barbers about me, and they told me about themselves,” Allen said. “It was cold and I got a slip.”
Lowe said the boys were surprised by their haircuts, which included logos, designer lines and stars. “This wasn’t just your basic hair,” Lowe said. “They were haircuts that would have actually cost a lot of money at the hairdresser.”
Antonio Jackson, a barber at the feed factory, said the smiles on the children’s faces when they saw themselves in the mirror after a haircut was priceless.
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“What it all did was … affect somebody’s life,” Jackson said. “I really enjoyed myself. I hope they enjoyed the experience as much as I did.”
Aaron Taggart, a third grader, said he enjoyed cutting hair and reading books. Clan Bishop, also in third grade, said he wants to be a hairdresser when he grows up.
“Hearing what they want to be when they grow up was amazing,” said barber Roosevelt Taggart of Artists & Blades.
“Telling them that they didn’t have a cut after school started and probably couldn’t get another for a while made me realize that we can do a lot more as barbers,” King Cuts barbers. Jeremy Gray said. “Now we can sympathize with them and possibly produce more productive children in society.”
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Lowe said some barbers offered to continue giving free haircuts to teenagers once a month for good behavior.
“That time was used for patronage,” said Lowe, who added haircuts began at 9 p.m.
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