By Belinda George, EdD
The journey to “Tucked in Tuesday” has been a rewarding and satisfying learning experience. The idea was created when I saw a post by Meleia Bridestine in a Facebook group called “Principal Principles Leadership Group”. I borrowed the idea in December 2018 and became an internet sensation in February of 2019.
I grew up in a two-bedroom trailer with my mother, father, and five sisters. We had a great life, and I loved to read! My parents encouraged us to do well in school and to get a higher education. This was very important to both of them because neither of them finished high school. My mother dropped out of high school in the 11th grade and my father in the 5th grade. He was the oldest son and quit school to help his father take care of their family. Both were highly intelligent but lacked the required years of schooling. They also didn’t have the time to read us bedtime stories, but they encouraged reading in the home.
Reading Stories Online
Reading to my scholars and their parents via Facebook Live was personal for me. I don’t have any biological children, but I always dreamed of being a mother. Educating children filled that void. I also knew building relationships was crucial when educating and growing tiny adults.
When I began reading I had about 35 viewers, but the numbers grew after I was featured in the local newspaper and on the local news. Soon after, The Washington Post picked up the story and “Tucked in Tuesday” instantly became a success. However, with the fame and encouragement, I was also faced with criticism for possible copyright infringement.
The Copyright Act
I began reading about copyright laws and learning about “fair use”. I discovered fair use did not protect me from copyright issues. Section 107 of the Copyright Act provides the framework regarding fair use. Armed with this knowledge and with the help of a fellow educator, I contacted the authors of the books I had read. Permission to read books was granted by several authors.
Books from authors began rolling in along with written permission to read their books online. I now contact authors to get their permission, and have taken it a step further with authors now making guest appearances. I also received more than 1,000 books from HarperCollins Publishers to read online to my scholars. Although I have the publisher’s consent, I still make attempts to contact the author so they may appear as a guest on “Tucked in Tuesday.”
This has been quite the experience. It’s not easy, but it is worth it. I have viewers from over all the U.S. in addition to international viewers. One of the most touching comments was from a mother in Mexico. She stated she and her son tune in to hear me read because she does not have access to English books. This was life changing for me. I knew at that moment I was doing more than just reading a book. I was touching lives and helping families I will possibly never meet.
About the Author
Dr. Belinda George is principal of Homer Drive Elementary in Beaumont ISD. Learn more about “Tucked in Tuesday.”
TEPSA News, September/October 2019, Vol 76, No 5
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