SOURCE: National Center for Family Literacy

National Center for Family Literacy

National Center for Family Literacy

National Center for Family Literacy

National Center for Family Literacy

National Center for Family Literacy

August 15, 2011 11:01 ET

National Center for Family Literacy Inspires Wonder in Fremont

NCFL's First Wonderopolis Challenge Sends a Local Fremont Family to Washington, D.C.

FREMONT, CA--(Marketwire - Aug 15, 2011) - NEWS FACTS

  • The National Center for Family Literacy successfully completed its first local Wonderopolis® Challenge, a summer program in which Fremont, Calif., families worked together to learn about their community.

  • Continued learning over the summer is key to preparing students to go back to school. The Fremont Challenge was designed to offer a fun and free way for families to combat this learning gap by piquing children's curiosity in an informal setting.

  • Through a series of simple weekly challenges, Fremont families learned more about:
    • Why Fremont's Niles District is sometimes called "The First Hollywood"
    • The city's many parks, including Fremont's own Olympic Gold Medal winner, Kristi Yamaguchi's Always Dream Play Park
    • How Fremont got its name and more on the town's colorful background
    • The history of Mission San José and the natural wonder of its Mission Peak
    • The bounty of produce at Fremont's three, year-round farmers markets
    • How residents get around town, and plans for the upcoming Warm Springs BART extension project

  • As part of its participation in the Wonderopolis Challenge, Fremont's Diaz family won a five-day all-expense paid trip to Washington, D.C., to learn more about our nation's history.
    • Eight-year-old Olivia Graham, 6-year-old Maxwell Graham and their parents, Lucia Diaz and Tim Graham, will head to the capital on Aug. 22, where they are most excited to see the dinosaurs at the Smithsonian Museum
    • Lucia is a kindergarten teacher at Fremont's Maloney Elementary School and Tim works as a counselor for disabled adults
    • The family members said they decided to participate in the Wonderopolis Fremont Challenge as a way to turn off the TV and tune into their local community this summer
    • The Diaz family completed all six challenges, including watching a silent film, exploring the Always Dream Play Park, designing a Fremont flag, snapping photos on the shores of Lake Elizabeth, enjoying a farmers market and riding bikes along a nature trail

  • Fremont families submitted 26 unique photos, drawings, narratives, poems and videos inspired by wonders spanning the city's five districts.

  • The National Center for Family Literacy has numerous programs in which families throughout the Bay Area and nationwide can participate year-round.
  • The Wonderopolis Fremont Challenge was made possible thanks to the generosity of:
    • Toyota: For the last 20 years, NCFL and Toyota have worked together to develop innovative program models serving families in 50 cities across the country. A grant from Toyota supported the 2011 Wonderopolis Fremont Challenge
    • Verizon: NCFL and Verizon have partnered for 11 years to create technology-driven resources. NCFL is a content partner of, which works with national education organizations to offer comprehensive teaching and learning resources. The national Wonderopolis program is supported by a three-year grant from Verizon Foundation


  • "We really enjoyed all the challenges and made an effort to ride our bike to the challenge sites. The one we enjoyed the most was attending the Fourth of July parade because Olivia marched in the main parade with the Girl Scouts, and Max marched in the Glenmoore parade with the Boy Scouts. We really felt like we were an important part of our city." - Lucia Diaz, mother of the Wonderopolis Fremont Challenge's winning family

  • "Seeing Fremont through the eyes of the families who live there -- whether by reading a poem they wrote about Lake Elizabeth or seeing a drawing of flowers they bought from local farmers -- has been amazing validation of the power of this program. We're confident that this program's most important lesson, that learning should be fun and integrated into everyday life, will stay with the families who participated in the Wonderopolis Fremont Challenge well beyond its close." - Emily Kirkpatrick, NCFL Vice President

The Wonderopolis Fremont Challenge was a summer program kicked off June 20th offering local families the chance to explore their city by participating in a series of challenges tied to local wonders. Designed and executed by the National Center for Family Literacy, the worldwide leader in family literacy, the program helps Fremont families close the problematic summer learning gap in a fun and free way. For more information, visit

The National Center for Family Literacy, founded in 1989 and based in Louisville, Ky., is the worldwide leader in family literacy. More than 1 million families have made positive educational and economic gains as a result of NCFL's work, which includes training more than 150,000 teachers and thousands of volunteers. For more information, contact 1-877-FAMLIT-1 or visit

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