Friday, January 27, 2012

family literacy day

Family Literacy Day is a national awareness initiative created by ABC Life Literacy Canada in 1999 and held annually on January 27th to raise awareness of the importance of reading and engaging in other literacy-related activities as a family. From the very beginning, I have always felt early literacy is really important in everyone's life. The hubby and I have made a great effort to focus on early literacy in our household. Both Little Miss L. and Baby D heard several stories inside the womb and as soon as they made their grand appearances into this wonderful world, they were surrounded by literature. There are many family literacy programs out there that focus on parents as the means to improve the reading and writing skills of all family members. By reading to children and engaging in fun literacy activities, parents are actively keeping their own skills sharp while at the same time strengthening the relationship between the family which, in turn, encourages lifelong learning.

Literacy is a whole lot more than reading, writing and arithmetic, it can be other fun things to do every day at home. There are so many benefits early literacy provides for our children, why not provide them with all the knowledge they need to prosper? Here are just a few advantages and why we should encourage early literacy:
  • The basic skills necessary for your child to become a good reader are acquired before your child even starts school.
  • Helps boost memory.
  • Sparks imagination.
  • Children become stronger readers if they start with a foundation of solid language and vocabulary skills.
  • Helps expand children's vocabulary.
  • Helps reading comprehension.
There are many ways to strengthen your family's literacy skills - all it takes is 15 minutes every day by practicing one or a few of the following things:
  • Reading - this can be reading a storybook before bed or during the day.
  • Write - bring out the pen and paper! Write out a grocery list, or hand-write a letter to an old friend.
  • Talk to your child a lot - talk aloud about what you are doing in your daily routines and life.
  • Tell stories and involve your children in the story telling process.
  • Sing songs together.
  • Help build a book collection for your children.
  • Point out familiar words everywhere you can.
  • Teach your child that letters are put together to form words.
  • If your child is not old enough to read, point out the pictures in a book and talk about them.
  • Hit up your local library.
  • Have a family game night.
  • Prepare a recipe together.
  • Call out road signs on your way to the store.
  • Have reading materials (books, magazines etc.) easily accessible to your children.
It truly is an easy task to make reading a part of your daily life. It is also important for us to remember not to push too hard. Learning how to read does not happen quickly - it takes years! As parents, we need to remind ourselves to be patient, reward positive beahviour, and make learning how to read fun and not work. If you are reading this post, then kudos to you - let's spread the word about early literacy today!
Yesterday, our local Live and Learn Resource Center hosted a morning full of fun for families to come and bring their little ones to listen to stories by members of the community.  The kids thought it was super cool that a police officer came to read some of their favourite books.
Little Miss L. was mesmerized by the fabulous books.

Local bank manager read Little Miss L.'s favourite book she brought to share with her friends. She was so proud of herself for bringing a book that everyone loved. 
The children loved listening to an instructor from OSSD
Happy literacy day everyone!

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1 comment:

  1. Fabulous post Shanna! Here in Brockville, we have the Ontario Early Years Center, who host an array of wonderful children's programs. They have a "toy bus" that drives to more rural areas (eg. Cardinal) to read to children and incorporate crafts and activities into their daily learning. I always enjoy reading your blog!