DETROIT ARSENAL, Mich. Aca,!" Maj. Gen. Kurt Stein, commander, TACOM Life Cycle Management Command, ignited the interest of inquisitive young readers at a storytelling here April 26.

In celebration of literacy week during Month of the Military Child, Stein read Aca,!A"This Old ManAca,!A? and Aca,!A"One Child, One PlanetAca,!A? to two groups of youngsters at the Child Development Center.

Aca,!A"We are fortunate to have a senior commander who cares so much about the well-being of our children,Aca,!A? said Nancy Mitchell, Child, Youth and School Services coordinator. Aca,!A"He related to the boys and girls on a personal level and really got the children involved in the stories.Aca,!A?

Stein successfully captured the childrenAca,!a,,cs interest right from the start when he showed them pictures of his grandchild. The children hovered around Stein to catch a glimpse of the photographs, laughing and giggling with pleasure.

Aca,!A"We are so thrilled with the childrenAca,!a,,cs response to Maj. Gen. SteinAca,!a,,cs reading,Aca,!A? said Jackie Uhazie, Child Development Center director. Aca,!A"They really interacted with the general and some even felt comfortable enough to climb on his lap.Aca,!A?

The playful morning reached its culmination when a special guest, Trooper, a 9-week-old Leader Dog in training, joined the festivities. Trooper may not have understood the narrative account, but he certainly appeared to relish in the attention given by both Stein and the children.

The U.S. Army designates four focus weeks during the month of April to encourage social-emotional development, cognitive development, physical development, and language and literacy. The CDC coordinates different projects or events each day to promote these areas of focus.

Aca,!A"Reading can really expand a childAca,!a,,cs vocabulary,Aca,!A? said Mitchell. Aca,!A"Laughter can reduce stress. Major General Stein successfully got the children to do both today.Aca,!A?