Jason Willey loves entertaining children through storytelling and music.
"Seeing the kids' faces and seeing the teachers and noticing everybody smile, and I'm doing that. I'm making people smile. So I had to keep doing it. I fell in love with it," said Jason Willey.
Willey came up with the idea of visiting local schools and libraries last year. He asked kindergarten teacher Kathy Etringer if he could visit Reinbeck Elementary to share his approach to inspire children to pick up a book.
"I like any new approach to getting kids to want to learn and to be excited about learning and reading," said Kathy Etringer.
Willey said his love of storytelling began when he was a child, listening to his mom.
"She told me stories. I can still remember sitting in a rocking chair on her lap. A little kid with my teddy bear, and she's take me and teddy bear on adventures. I think that's the root of it all," said Jason Willey.
Willey started by putting bass lines to Dr. Seuss books. Now, he's writing his own stories to music.
"He does a great job. If you watch the kids faces, they are just entranced," said Etringer.
"I think it's a positive impact on a child's life, and it doesn't take much to make up a story or pick up a book," said Willey.
Kathy Etringer said Willey's visits do have a positive impact on the students.
"When he comes in then usually my kids want to write in their journals. They want to write their own stories," said Etringer.
Jason Willey plans to continue performing in schools and libraries. Etringer said schools need more people like him willing to volunteer their time.
Jason Willey has two performances so far this summer. He'll be at the Hudson Library at 10 a.m. on June 12th and at the Shell Rock Library on July 17th at 1 p.m.
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